Retaining talent in science and technology: a mission beyond the bicentennial

In the midst of the pandemic, and in the face of the bicentennial, it is undeniable that investing in science and technology should be a priority. However, the eternal beast of “urgent” always postpones the structural changes that, at the state level, must be made to improve the vision of development we need in the face of a society capable of solving problems in another way. Over time, the constant promise of an unfulfilled “research stimulus” ended up encouraging brain drain, which is the one we need to keep.

A few weeks ago, President Francisco Sagaste Stressed the need to improve research and development conditions, giving National Council for Science and Technology Leading role in research. At the ceremony, the outgoing authority highlighted the divide that currently puts us at a disadvantage:

“In Peru, some accounts say that we should have about 20,000 to 25,000 Ph.D.s or Doctors in the fields of science. At the moment, CONCYTEC records estimate, if I am not mistaken, that there are about five thousand or six thousand,” The president noted in his speech. “We have to make a huge effort, a huge effort to catch up with what our country requires to be on the frontier of knowledge just like other countries.”

Isn’t Peru attractive for innovation?

NS Alonso Mujica, CEO de Celapuz And a broad expert in the business model of technology projects, the commitment of the State of Peru should be strong in restoring technological and scientific talent: “Peru must have a much stronger scientific and technological ecosystem in order to merit retaining or redeeming talent abroad.”

This incentive includes several conditions, both from the state and from the private side. Although there is a regulatory framework for investment in innovation, the fact is that our overall investment in these issues is only 10% of the total money pumped into science and technology by neighboring countries such as Colombia, Chile and Brazil.

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To make matters worse, the negative role of the state pushes other companies to offer better tax and financial conditions for Peruvian entrepreneurs, and to strengthen the constitution axles regional

“For example, there are other countries where you can get financing to boost and improve your business, easy access to bank loans, government subsidies or research and development funds; and above all, you pay less taxes than in Peru” Mujica’s statements. “In other words, not only do you have access to more capital, but even when your business starts operating, you are better off working from those countries than from Peru because of a tax problem.”

Science and the necessity of attracting investment

NS Carla Ars Tord, Peruvian astrophysicist, there is a clear problem in identifying the benefits of science, especially with those “exact sciences” capable of providing solutions to various problems.

“One of the pillars of scientific development in society is the democratization of science, in which society shows the utility and utility of all fields of science; and how each of them, in any case, has an impact on our lives, whether in the short, medium or long term” Highlights of the scholarly publisher. “If we continue to contribute these details, I believe that in the not too distant future we will be able to have a globalized scientific sector in Peru that will allow us to develop distinguished scientific careers in our country.”

in the midst of clear management problem for research projects, Arce-Tord had to choose to leave the country and settle in Chile To further expand your professional horizon in issues of observational astronomy. However, he believes there are benefits to this decision.

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I think the two main reasons for leaving the country would be: first, to form a network of contacts and collaborators. This not only contributes to bringing good research projects and external funding to the country, but cooperation with researchers around the world gives students in Peru the opportunity to start working with teachers from different parts of the world and training with very good scientific standards from universities in Peru. and two that allow us to gain new knowledge and research management systems that can be applied in the country,” pointing to 2014 Winner of the Astrophysics Scientist Prize, organized by International Federation of Radio Science.

A little encouraging digital entrepreneurship in Peru

In case Victor Morales, Founder financial technology “Alfie”, It is proof. Due to the lack of incentives on the part of the public and private sectors, it had to establish its base of operations in Mexico, as it is a country that has developed a strong strategy to promote this type of company.

“In neighboring countries such as Chile, Colombia and Brazil – which are only here – the accompanying and other tools exist to advance these issues of innovation, science and technology,” Mention the employer.

In terms of support, the state has sought to finance the agricultural sector as a serious measure to enhance productivity and the level of competitiveness along with increasing exports. but nevertheless, These types of strategies do not apply to the technology sector قطاع Seeking to inject capital to standardize an attractive offer.

“There are no proper tools that take this government effort or those funds or these issues, which the Ministry of Production has been doing for some time, towards the real actors”, Morales mentions. “I think the issue of accelerators or incubators in Peru has been raised very badly. The support should come with appropriate tools for the real players of science, technology and innovation in Peru, so as not to force them out and be attracted by foreign offers.”

Currently, Alfie establishes its base of operations in Mexico and It already has strategic alliances from the central government To promote financial education from a technological approach and to enhance savings with retirement in mind.

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What should Peru do to retain talent?

Although a complex situation, the interviewees had a definite view of the role that the state plays in this rethinking. NS Carla Ars Tord, The reorganization of the state department to promote research should include better working conditions.

“One of the priority issues is the management of science-oriented public policies. The processes of funding research projects by public entities have a very bureaucratic approach and correspond little to what it means to actually carry out a research project, which is why the exact sciences, which are responsible for generating new knowledge, do not In addition, if we want our scholars to develop their careers in the country, instead of emigrating, we must improve working conditions and formally establish a career as a researcher. To this we undoubtedly add the importance of funding projects aimed at disseminating science at the national level”, researcher commented.

“Peru is a country where operating – that is, owning your base and equipment – ​​is much cheaper than any big city in the region. So, if we have good incentives to set up hubs or central offices in Lima or anywhere in the country, from here it would be to provide service to other countries great goal,” Refers to the Mujica differential.

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