Chapter 11

Science Abroad

16.02.2016

01_POSTS_#11_01

As I was telling you in my previous post, the number of Spanish scientists of worldwide renown is quite high. Many of them have moved from their hometowns and meet at associations of Spanish researchers abroad in countries like Australia, Denmark, Germany, United Kingdom, Japan, Sweden and America. These associations are promoted by the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology — FECYT, for its initials in Spanish — and supported by other institutions such as the Ramón Areces Foundation and the Spanish embassies in each country.

Spanish scientists of worldwide renown is quite high. Many of them have moved from their hometowns and meet at associations of Spanish researchers abroad.

ACES brings together Spanish scientists settled in Sweden, both from academia and the private sector. Its leitmotiv is the internal, bilateral and transnational networking.

01_POSTS_#11_02Being in the north of Europe, I wanted to make sure I got to know some of these associations, so few weeks ago Hakon and I packed our rucksacks and visited the Spanish Embassy in Stockholm, where the Association of Spanish Scientists in Sweden — ACES, for its initials in Spanish — had organised its second general assembly that held a lecture on its activities and synergies with the FECYT. The talks proved to be of great help for understanding who form these associations and how they operate.

Most of them are created to meet the need that Spanish scientists and researchers have of a place to help advance their professional and personal integration in their country of residence. The objective of FECYT is to support the work of Spanish researchers abroad and promote their connection with the Spanish System of Science, Technology and Innovation in order to preserve the importance of Spain in the international context.

In addition, it is a communicational link to advance professional relations between the members of Spanish scientific communities abroad, designed to favour connections between the working environments of Spain and those of foreign countries. Rather than furthering Spain’s specific interest in science, the idea is to promote scientific synergies worldwide.

They are created to meet the need that Spanish researchers have of a place to help advance their professional and personal integration in their country of residence.

Karolinska Institutet is one of the world’s leading medical universities and since 1901 selected the Nobel laureates in Physiology or Medicine.

Our flying visit to the Swedish capital proved very inspiring, as we had the opportunity of meeting some of the members of the board of directors of ACES, like two young Ph.D. students who work at the historical Uppsala University and the vice-president of the board, a researcher at a pioneering medical teaching centre, the prestigious Karolinska Institutet.

In 2015, among the ten Spanish winners of ‘Innovators Under 35,’ two received an additional recognition — Carlos Castro named ‘Innovator of the Year’ and Miguel Luengo as ‘Social Innovator of the Year.’

01_POSTS_#11_03Next week I’ll have completed my study programme and so I’ve set out on a path of introspection, analysing everything I’ve learnt and experienced here in order to discover what truly interests me. For now all I can say is that my eyes light up when I see young Spanish researchers receiving international recognition for initiatives such as ‘Innovators under 35,’ curated by MIT Technology Review.


01_POSTS_#11_notebookAfter open a new chapter in my notebook entitled What about the Spanish researchers?,’ I’ve set out on a path of introspection, analysing everything I’ve learnt and experienced here in order to discover what truly interests me.