´100xCiencia2´ meeting gathers ´Severo Ochoa´ Centres of Excellence and ´María de Maeztu´ Units of Excellence in Alicante

Carmen Vela, the Spanish Secretary of State of Research, Development and Innovation, opened the meeting, and emphasized the importance of bringing closer science and business.


“Co-creating Value in Scientific Research” was the topic of this meeting, which was dedicated to the transfer of scientific knowledge to companies. As Salvador Palazón, the Valencian Agency of Research and Prospective (AVAP) director, pointed out, ´innovation is stopped in the last stage of the process, which is the transfer of knowledge from research centres to companies. Without this transfer, there is no innovation, and without innovation, we are risking our future´. Palazón emphasised the relevance of meetings amongst the heads of Spanish Centres of Excellence for communicating their transfer results.


Carmen Vela highlighted that resources dedicated to SO Centres and MM Units of Excellence ´are an investment instead of an expenditure´, and expressed her recognition and gratitude to these research centres for the extraordinary work they are doing.


´The money we dedicate to research is very well invested, and you are doing an excellent work despite the limited means you can count on.You only constitute 1% of all researchers in the world, but you make 3.2% of global science and your publications constitute 5% of those from the international scientific community´, said Carmen Vela.


The Spanish Secretary of State of Research, Development and Innovation highlighted that the transfer of knowledge between science and companies must be a circular concept. ´We must be able to join the things we know, generate knowledge and carry it to society. You are also doing well in transfer issues, because quality is an attraction for other sectors ´, she said about Centres of Excellence.


In Carmen Vela´s opinion, research and innovation have to go together. ´With this idea, we have tried to break barriers. We should try to bring these two sectors closer, science and business. We must not think that companies have to be outside University anymore´, she noted. ´As resources are limited, grants are only allocated to the academic world. And there are no resources for private companies. But I would like to put an end to this, because research should be funded, regardless to the field where it is done, either public or private´.


Carmen Vela pointed out that in several countries, such as Corea, ´more than 80% of the dedication to research comes from the business sector. And in the most advanced countries this percentage is above 70%. In Spain, we have half the PhDs in companies in comparision with the rest of the countries in the OECD. Not all the researchers we educate can dedicate to the academic sector. We have to do a circular economy based on knowledge, where our scientists can also arrive to companies´.


´100xCiencia2´ meeting counted on three master conferences given by three woman with an internationally recognised relevance: Krista Keränen, Lita Nelsen and Nuria Oliver.


´Severo Ochoa´ and ´María de Maeztu´ accreditations are the greatest official recognition to scientific research in Spain. To achieve this accreditation, centres are chosen by an international evaluating committee. These centres and units almost cover every area of knowledge, from physics and mathematics to environment and biomedicine.


Recently, the 25 Centres and the 16 Units recognised with ´Excellence Severo Ochoa´ and ´María de Maeztu´ distinctions have created the Severo Ochoa and María de Maeztu Alliance (SOMMa).



About the Centro de Biotecnología y Genómica de Plantas (CBGP, UPM-INIA)


The Centro de Biotecnología y Genómica de Plantas (CBGP) is a joint research centre of the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) and the Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA).


The strategic objectives of the CBGP (UPM-INIA) are the generation of fundamental knowledge on the genetic and molecular bases of key biological and physiological processes in plants and plant-interacting organisms, and on genomics of plants and plant-interacting organisms. The Centre also aims to develop new computational Biology technologies for the functional analysis of plants/microorganisms.


CBGP (UPM-INIA) scientists are grouped into three main Research Areas/Themes: Plant Development (7 groups); Interactions of Plants with Environment (9 groups) and Biotechnology and Bioinformatics (5 groups; see Scientific Information). CBGP has attracted talented scientists since its foundation, including 11 Tenure-track positions and 3 ERC starting grants. CBGP has a remarkable Translational Biology activity in the innovation ecosystem of the International Campus of Excellence of Montegancedo-UPM. This activity has resulted in the foundation of CBGP based spin-offs enterprises and the development of new products/processes for the bioeconomy productive sectors