Science and Technology: Revitalizing a Key Sector | Views of Minister Daniel Filmus and Conicet President Anna Franchi
The science and technology sector has shown clear signs of recovery. Recently, Minister Daniel Filmus announced that by 2022 it will be invested 4500 million pesos to relaunch the Space Access Program From the National Committee for Space Activities (KONAI). This component will include the manufacture of experimental vehicles and the Tronador II and III launch pads, capable of placing satellites weighing 750 kg into orbit. Spatial development as a strategic goal adds to the float Blue Bamba: the initiative that brings together the wills of seven ministries and seeks to develop new knowledge to conserve and benefit from the resources of the Argentine Sea; as well as revitalizing Roots Program Which provides for the repatriation of scientists and scholars to their homelands abroad. Unlike in 2019, when only three people returned, there were actually 79 cuttings that returned to the local soil.
The promotion of spatial and marine development and the return of runaway human resources in less happy times constitute three state policies that were vigorously promoted during the Kirchner states, and were during McCrista’s unguarded administration. The primary key to the new momentum is Science and Technology Financing Act, which expects a gradual increase in the scientific and technological function of the national budget until it reaches 1 percent of GDP in 2032. As a result, next year it will go from 0.28 to 0.31 percent: instead of receiving 7 billion pesos, the portfolio will receive 23 billion . With this scene in the background, the fresh air of the strip is marked by the incorporation of more researchers into Conicet. If during the macrismo income drops to 450, in 2021 companies jump to 820Thus, he broke the record of 12,000 male and female scientists in the race.
Similarly, the A plan to strengthen human resources for science and technology organizations, to add a thousand more worlds by competition; Conicet’s professionals, technicians and technology support staff for research and development are integrated into private pension system for scientific researchers. The role of the National Agency for the Promotion of Research, Technological Development and Innovation (R + D + I) becomes fundamental in all project financing and activities.
Alberto Fernandez’s government has an express desire to put science and technology at the service of the country. From his speech, the CEO “seeks not only to support science and technology, but also to rely on science and technology” to direct actions toward the unification of the knowledge-based development model. This is how the minister expresses it Daniel Filmus in conversation with Page 12: “The government of Alberto and Cristina, as a central hub, has put forward the possibility of changing the country’s production matrix. Part of this has to do with the contribution of science and technology to the generation of transport that allows the value chains to increase for primary products.” Much of this transformation, in 2021, is related to Commitment to energy conversion, with lithium and green hydrogen in the lead.
Along these lines, proceeding from the Minister’s conception, the historical export scheme of primary products should be transformed by import substitution, which is also aimed at exporting advanced products with greater added value. Under this assumption, relations with other ministries are considered essential. “Influencing the economy through knowledge is the central focus of the ministry. That is why we hold regular conversations, with Matías Colvas and Martin Guzman, with the sole purpose of Solve our people’s problems. Not only basic sciences are funded, but also social sciences, which have been undervalued during the previous semester,” says Vilmus. The Science and Technology Against Hunger program or grassroots economics and medical cannabis projects align in this regard.
Cone on the right track
During the pandemic, communication between Conicet and universities has been key to taking advantage of proven capabilities in the manufacture of chin straps from antiviral fabrics, the manufacture of tests to detect the presence of the virus or antibodies in the body, as well as the challenge taken by various groups across the country to determine the design of an Argentine vaccine. One hundred percent anti-bacterial.
“After four years of macrismo and two years of the pandemic, we are starting to recover. Basically, the Funding Act allows us to increase the budget from year to year, thus allowing for the opportunity to plan,” he says. Anna Franchi, Head of Conicet. He continues: “On the other hand, We have handled equipment purchase and delivery due since 2016, and advanced construction of 20 new buildings Which will be built from 2022 for scientists to develop their tasks in more suitable fields. We increase scholarship stipends: Today, the grant recipient receives 82 thousand pesos“.
The salary of professional researchers may constitute the main account payable. Franchi does not get away with it and points out: “Three salary hierarchies were awarded to researchers; It’s not enough yet, we know, but we’re on the right track to get back everything we lost between 2015 and 2019“.Another of the outstanding historical accounts is the federalization of the system. The asymmetry that exists between the provinces is one of the struggles that Konisette worries about reversing.”The center of the country concentrates more than 80 percent of all human resources for science and technology. Therefore, we start with a special income for the job that is related to strengthening the different governorates. San Juan, La Pampa, Chaco and Catamarca will identify their strategic issues and based on that, HR will be integrated in their jurisdictions. We will also seek to solve objective vacancies, which in turn are fundamental to the country, such as forestry or marine sciences,” Franchi describes.
Science and technology, like other sensitive areas such as education, require state policies that can be sustained over time. In previous decades, Kirchner governments promoted strategic science and technology plans for 2010 and 2020. However, when it was necessary to establish the guidelines for the 2030 Agenda, the macrista administration did not. “During the macrismo, the country was left without a plan for science and technology. We propose that the Argentina 2030 Plan be voted into law. To do this, we have started discussions with the provinces, universities, the scientific community, the Economic and Social Council and many other actors,” says Filmus. Starting this month, in open and plural spaces of dialogue, the challenges to be faced until the next decade are discussed. The model of federal and sovereign development will loom On the horizon again.
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