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Portugal's commitment to Science

Clarisse Faria-Fortecoëf

A significant development, but a lot remains to be done in order to achieve the goals set in 2006 by the Portuguese Government

In order that Portugal catches up its delay in science and technology compared to the other European countries, the government in 2006 launched a program entitled "Um Compromisso com a Ciência para o Futuro de Portugal" (a commitment to science for the future of Portugal) .

A key objective is to double until 2009, public investment in scientific research from 0.5% to 1% of GDP and to triple private investment which in 2003 only represented 0.24% of GDP.

In terms of scientific production, evolution is significant in quantity but also, in quality.
Thus, the statistical report published in August 2008 by the Office of planning, strategy, evaluation and international relations (GPEARI  - Gabinete de Planeamento, Estrategia, Avaliação e Relações Internacionais) of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education (MCTES - Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia ae Ensino Superior) on the Portuguese scientific production between 1981 and 2007 based on bibliometric indicators, shows that 28,771 items were produced between 2003 and 2007, which means an average of 575 articles per year. The government's goal of 600 articles a year would have been reached in 2007.
Chemistry is the field the most productive, Law being the last of the list with only 3 items at an international level between 2003-2007.
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