Chile needs to invest in science

Chile needs to invest in science


Almost for a matter of pity, it's hard to come and demand more from the government these days. The economic situation is complicated and demanding resources (bonds, adjustments, etc.) seems to have become the national dance. However, when it comes to investing boldly in science, we are talking about betting on a country that seeks to transcend and give this generation and the future the chance to grow thanks to the knowledge economy.

Chile has the human capital to do so, but resources are lacking. Investment in science does not buy votes or help raise points in surveys, of course; but it lays the groundwork for real change. The state, with an ultraconservative mindset, has been unable to understand this message that for decades has been repeating various actors of the national and international scientific work. The current situation in Conicyt (which we hope will improve with the arrival of Dr. Bernabé Santelices) and Fondecyt's sad budget only graficar the dissatisfied that our authorities exhibit for the scientific development of the country. It is not a question of conferring mesinic properties on science and knowledge, but the facts speak for themselves: it is sufficient to look to the countries that have had as a continuous policy the provision of such activities and to quantify their economic and social development.

In Chile, investment in knowledge must go beyond poor right and left rankings. It's really about going forward or backward, and sadly our country has consciously chosen the option behind. "Please, Press Forward" and let's build the foundations of a better economy with home-made added value. Will any politician be encouraged to play it for science? Chile can no longer wait.

Luis F. Larrondo
Director of Millennium Nucleus for Fungal Integrative and Synthetic Biology. PuC Academic