The Department of International Relations, the DRI, is the institutional structure which promotes and supports the links between the different Programmes and departments of CONICYT with overseas.
It has as its mission the implementation and management of policies of international cooperation developed by CONICYT, with the purpose of furthering the integration of the national scientific community with its foreign peers, as well as linking the work of the institution with national and international organisations in the field of science and technology.
In order to fulfil this mission, the DRI has developed the following courses of action:
- The identification of the opportunities and benefits of other scientific and technological systems with the purpose of promoting the formation and development of qualified human resources.
- To promote and reinforce the establishment of links between national researchers and their foreign peers.
- To identify national priorities and needs in the field of science and technology with the intention of creating opportunities for the scientific community in an international context.
- The identification and development of competitive niches on an international level for the incorporation of national researchers and the results of their work.
- The consolidation and development of networks of human resources of a scientific nature and of the flow of information and knowledge pertaining to the national system in order to incorporate it into the international realm.
- To respond to national and international demands to link the scientific community and CONICYT with national and international organisations in scientific and technological matters.
- To facilitate the mobility of researchers as well as the training of young Chileans and foreigners, within the framework of inter-institutional agreements of cooperation, stemming from homologated organisations.
- The harnessing of the international resources of counterparts through Programmes of cooperation which permit the participation of post-graduate students in projects of mutual cooperation.
THE ACTIVITIES OF THE DRI
Through the management and coordination of these diverse courses of action, the activities of the DRI are directed towards:
Bi-lateral Cooperation: CONICYT favours and facilitates the linking of the national scientific community with its international peers, on the basis of mutual scientific excellence and talking into consideration the interests of both parties. To bring this about, to date approximately 40 inter-institutional agreements have been signed with foreign counterparts, in which the training of human resources for research, business, the organisation of seminars, workshops, and conferences of an international character are examined, in addition to the links between science and technology.
Multi-lateral Cooperation: By means of a Chilean government delegation and the scientific and technological policy of the various organisations, institutions and Programmes, this national commission belongs to a list of the focal point groups, amongst others. By way of example, through different modalities, the following can be cited:
- In its capacity as focal point in the Convention of International Commerce of Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES), it agrees to hand over to the Farming and Agriculture Service (SAG), scientific information about extinct species.
- In the Ibero-American Scientific and Technological Programme for Development (CYTED), it is the Chilean signatory organisation, coordinates development on a national level of the Programme’s various courses of action through the active participation of the scientific community in the activities of the above, as well as the development of projects, networks and innovation projects of IBEROEKA. In addition, it must preside over the scientific quality of national participation in the proposals presented.
- In relation to cooperation with the European Community, Chile has signed an agreement of partnership, through which is established an association with the European Community and its member states on one side and the Republic of Chile on the other.
- In addition, it signed, in a specific form, an agreement on Scientific and Technological Cooperation between the Republic of Chile and the European Community, where CONICYT is the government organisation with the job of coordinating and facilitating the cooperative activity that is generated under the protection of this Agreement (Article 6).
Action to strengthen international cooperation
In this field, the DRI supports the holding of international scientific congresses in Chile, workshops for the development of training with counterpart organisations; supports Chilean scientific societies in the participation of doctorate students in congresses which they hold; and coordinates specific Programmes of scholarships and placements with some counterpart groups .
Milestones and Achievements:
Participation in negotiations in the field of S&T (Science/Technology) for the signing of government to government agreements and in joint commissions.
In relation to the inter-institutional cooperation agreements signed by CONICYT, the DRI has established negotiation processes with the DFG of Germany, FAPESP and the Brazilian Ministry of Science and Technology, The Office of Seismology of the Peoples Republic of China, The Fulbright Commission of the USA, a pact and protocol with INRIA and AGROPOLIS of France, The New Zealand Ministry of Science and Technology, The Spanish Ministry of Science and Technology, SENACYT of Panama, The Russian Academy of Science and with the Uruguayan Ministry of Education and Culture.
The diffusion on a national level of the VI Framework Programme of the European Union, by means of:
Consultation with the scientific community in the identification of areas of interest and established links with European peers.
As part of the political dialogue between Chile and Europe, a seminar called "CHILE- EUROPA, Science and Technology: Another Challenge" has been set up, to disseminate the Programme and identify areas, instruments and modes of collaboration.
Informative expositions regarding the characteristics, opportunities and mechanisms of the Programme
With the purpose of making the activities of CONICYT’s counterparts known, the DRI has coordinated visits directed at Chilean universities, scientific institutions and businesses.
Participation in joint inter-institutional commissions with ECOS, CNRS and INRIA of France, and with DAAD and BF of Germany amongst others, to analyse the state of bilateral cooperation and preside over exchange projects and agree work Programmes.
The new scenarios which confront the development of science in Chile, motivate CONICYT to combine national interests in materials (scientific, technological, and innovatory) with new areas of existing research, to make a significant effort to strengthen cooperation and integration of science and technology, all in accordance with the levels of development that are sought to be attained. To this end, it has become necessary to share experience and knowledge with countries with whom strong ties in Science/Technology are maintained, which will allow the generation of new Programmes of cooperation, establish common areas of interest and create tools for scientific and technological transfer necessary for the growth of our society and productive centres.
Additionally CONICYT is contemporising its policies of international cooperation, through which it must inform and negotiate the new emphasis with its counterparts. In this regard the Department of International Relations proposes to:
Design Programmes of cooperation which allow the country to reconcile its interests with the new opportunities that have recently been generated.
Revise the inter-institution agreements signed with each of the counterparts and specify the new modality which is established with each of them.
Connect common policies between CONICYT and national institutions which carry out research activity with foreign counterparts, and which are of mutual interest.
Generate action which allows the strengthening and promotion of those relations already established by Chilean scientists and technicians with their foreign peers.
Favour the interaction between scientists, academic institutions and national businesses with their foreign contemporaries for the generation of international research centres and groups, and the training of post-graduates in areas designated as priorities for the country.
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