With the aim of updating the discussion agenda of science and technology indicators in Latin America, on November 13 and 14, the XII Meeting of the RICYT Technical Committee took place in the city of Buenos Aires. This group is made up of those responsible for the production of science, technology and innovation indicators in the national science and technology organizations of the region and meets annually to seek common solutions for the production of statistics.
The XII Meeting had representatives from fifteen Ibero-American countries, together with experts from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Institute of Statistics of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UIS-UNESCO), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the International Development Research Center (IDRC) of Canada. Throughout the two days a technical debate was held on how to improve the quality of science, technology and innovation statistics, with a focus on regional and international comparability.
The event was jointly organized by RICYT, the Ibero-American Observatory of Science, Technology and Society (OCTS-OEI) and the Secretariat of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation of Argentina. It took place at the Center for Higher University Studies of the Organization of Ibero-American States (CAEU-OEI) with the support of UIS-UNESCO and the IDB.
The topics discussed
The first session focused on the novelties of the recently published 4th Revision of the Oslo Manual. The presentation was given by Fernando Galindo Rueda, head of science, technology and innovation indicators at the OECD, who examined the most important changes in this new version of the manual for measuring innovation.
A table was then offered for debate on different methodologies for measuring innovation. This roundtable included studies on the collection of indicators on green innovation in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as different measurement experiences in the manufacturing, services and agriculture sectors.
Under the title “Harmonization of indicators of scientific and technological activities”, members of the RICYT technical team shared a comparative analysis of ACT indicators that were reported to the Network during the last year. This presentation was joined by the experiences of UIS-UNESCO, based on a global consultation on the measurement methodology of scientific and technological services, and of the MECCyT, after the application of a new module in the survey that the institution conducts annually in Argentina.
During the session dedicated to the presentation of data and new forms of visualization, different virtual platforms were disseminated, among them the latest news regarding the RICYT platform, the ICONO portal (of the Spanish FECYT) and the platform “Science in figures ”From COLCIENCIAS. The last debates of the day had to do with the measurement of the contribution of science and technology to the monitoring of sustainable development objectives, by UIS-UNESCO, and with the improvement of statistics at the regional level, with a presentation of the Ministry of Economy of Chile.
The second working day began with the presentation of initiatives carried out by international organizations in the field of indicators and policy evaluation in science, technology and innovation. The harmonized microdata base of innovation surveys in Latin America developed by the IDB was described; the RQ + approach carried out by IDRC was introduced to take into account the values and context of innovation activities; and the OECD mechanisms for measuring tax incentives for R&D were presented.
Finally, the measurement of gender issues in science and technology was discussed. The RICYT broke down the results of the micro-survey of availability and priorities in gender indicators, while experts from the Colombian Observatory of Science and Technology and the Chilean National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research (CONICYT) commented on the experiences of their respective countries in the I work with indicators of this type.
The meeting culminated with the presentation of the work plan for next year. In 2019 the group will meet again in the city of Asunción, thanks to the offer of the National Council of Science and Technology (CONACYT) of Paraguay.