On June 26, 2016 we will be asked to vote again. A new opportunity to decide in a general election who will represent us during the next four years. In just two of weeks we will be able to choose the parties and people who will have the responsibility, both in the government and the opposition, to decide what course the country is to take in economic, social, equality, territorial and labor terms. But we also get the chance to choose the Representatives and Senators who will decide the policies on research and science.
That’s why we asked the professors and researchers at the UPV, preferably at Campus Gandia, to help us out. We’ve asked the four major political parties to give us more information about the science and research measures proposed in their electoral programs.
Below, we share the views of representatives from the Popular Party, PSOE, #ALaValenciana and the Citizens party. The order of publication we have followed correspond to the results of the December 20, 2015 elections, from the highest to the lowest percentage of votes.
POPULAR PARTY – Carlos Gil
For the Popular Party, the university plays a key role in the future labor market. Many students today, in the future will work in jobs that haven’t been invented yet. Given this reality, the central role of the university should not be limited to the transmission of knowledge, but providing students with the necessary skills to successfully tackle the continuous learning that they will face during their working life.
To do this, we consider that, notwithstanding equity, excellence should be promoted in the lecture halls, developing the creative/investigative character of the student and transversal competences such as flexibility and resilience, that allow for greater adaptability to the future demands of the labor market, with special focus on emerging niches and the application of ICT.” More information
PSOE – Romina del Rey
Because we know that science is the key to the economic future and well being and knowledge of our society, science is a priority for the Socialists. R&D&I is a pillar of our program:
- We will increase resources in research and development: public investment will double in research, a new line of funding will open for institutional programs of universities and government agencies, public-private partnerships will be stimulated, participation in the various H2020 programs will be encouraged, among others.
- We will bring back our scientists and improve cooperation and coordination, with a plan for the incorporation, recovery and consolidation of scientific talent, bringing Society, Businesses, Universities and Research Centers closer together.
- We review the administrative obstacles in R&D, because we Socialists know the bureaucratic ocean that a researcher has to navigate.
In short, we will promote a Culture of Innovation with a plan for dissemination, communication and scientific culture, promoting the social transfer of science, technology and innovation. More information
#ALaValenciana – Isabel Pérez
We believe that a deep change is needed in the current production model, requiring investment – with both public and private funds – in economic activities with high added value. For us, the University and research are the key drivers of innovation, development, cohesion and social, cultural and economic revitalization. We want to increase investment in R&D&I to 2.7% in 2017, to 3% (the European average) in 2020, and that this becomes a protected budgetary provision. The biggest economic effort needs to go towards the increase in staff capacity rather than infrastructure or equipment.
We are aware of the excessive bureaucracy and we aim to reduce it. A research career needs to be a profession from day one, and not just the continuation of a higher education. It is essential to structure and coordinate the R&D&I system, from the agents who create knowledge, development and transfer, to its productive use, explicitly considering the role of basic science. We propose measures to reverse the “brain drain” and avoid this economic and intellectual loss of human capital. Always supporting and seeking consensus with the public University. More information
CITIZENS – Vicente J. Casanova
Our national program includes three sets of measures:
- A new Spanish innovation system, emulating the German model of public-private cooperation, so that the generation of ideas is transformed into jobs and businesses. This includes a significant reinforcement of spending on R&D that can be funded with a change in the priorities of Spanish public investment. We are particularly concerned that the R&D needs to transcend to the scope of research applied to SMEs, where there is a real transfer of knowledge.
- A set of measures to facilitate the entry of highly innovative companies.
- A set of measures to promote the operation, productivity and growth of the most productive small and medium businesses, facilitating the business activity of self-employed entrepreneurs and SMEs.