Vladimir de Semir: “The scientific research situation in Spain is disastrous”

From 14 to 23 November Catalonia will celebrate Science Week, the aim of which is to popularise science, making free science and technology activities available to everybody.  Science week will be held in many cities throughout Spain and Europe. ‘Popularisation of science is a basic requirement so that society can understand and interpret scientific work and discoveries, to encourage interest in and support for all professionals who work in this field, and to promote progress and wellbeing”, said  Vladimir de Semir, the academic director of the Master in Scientific Communication at UPF-IDEC.

However, we are offered a different view by the Spanish National Statistics Agency, which released its provisional data on R&D spending in Spain, making the limited value placed on scientific research clear. Some 13,052 million euros were spent in 2013 between companies, public administration and higher education institutes, which equates to 1.24% of GDP/ Just 123,582 people are employed in the sector, 7.2% of the total employed population of Spain. Spain is ranked 16th in Europe in R&D.

“The numbers don’t lie, it is very clear: in the last two years the number of Spanish scientists has shrunk by 6,653 people, observed De Semir. This situation, according to De Semir, puts Spain in the position of being a service society, with little added value.