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The OECD examines the R&D model in Catalonia

Research and Development in Catalonia is on the good track but still presents important weaknesses to be solved. The Catalan Government stresses the strengths underlined in the OECD study and says that the report is in line with its own action plan.

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04 June 2010 04:09 PM

by

Alba Falcó

Barcelona (CNA). - The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has given its diagnosis on the Research and Development model in Catalonia. Among the strengths: the institutional commitment for innovation and high creativity. The main weaknesses are linked to the education system, to the poor collaboration between public and private sectors, and a lack of innovation from small and medium sized companies. Catalan Minister Josep Huguet makes a positive analysis of the study. It is the first time that this international organisation has carried out such an audit in Spain and the third European country having undergone such a study.


Among the strengths of the Catalan model, the OECD highlights the Government's high commitment to innovation, a high level of creativity and solid infrastructure in science and technology. During the presentation, Joaquim Oliveira, head of the Division of Regional Development Policies of the OECD, also enumerated the weaknesses of the Catalan system. They include: the rigid higher education model, the small number of technical workers, the low innovative capacity of smaller and medium sized companies, an undersized patent culture, and low levels of collaboration between the public and private sectors.

The Minister of Innovation, Universities and Business, Josep Huguet, made a positive balance of the diagnosis of the Catalan model. He said that many of the OECD recommendations “are already in the Research Plan for innovation” recently approved by the Catalan Government. Huguet stressed that Catalonia has gained a lot in the R&D field. According to Huguet, Catalonia absorbs 1% of the world's scientific output, 2,5% of European production and 25% of the Spanish production. According to his department’s figures, Catalonia would be the fifth country in the EU in innovative capacity. Huguet insisted that the public sector is the main “engine of change” of the productive model.
 
The Division for Regional Development Policies has made the OECD diagnosis. The report was one of the commitments included in the National Pact for Research and Innovation, aiming to provide an overall evaluation of the system by an international organisation in order to get an objective radiography on the Catalan model. The study was carried out during the month of December and includes more than 50 interviews with various key figures in the research and innovation plan in Catalonia.

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  • Josep Huguet has made a positive balance of the diagnosis

  • Josep Huguet has made a positive balance of the diagnosis
Josep Huguet talks about the recommendations of the OECD