“We all want 2022 to be the year that marks the beginning of the end of a particularly difficult period for all of us”, said Elvira Fortunato at the opening of the national meeting Ciência 2022.

For this, she defended, it is necessary to “use carefully and rigorously the financial resources made available by the European Union”.

They should be applied “in the qualification of the Portuguese, in the development of science and in an effort of convergence until 2030 in climate action and digitalisation”, she said.

The scientific research model must be based on collaboration between researchers, institutions, companies and civil society, she defended.

Increase in researchers

The president of the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT), Helena Pereira, stressed that Portugal currently has almost 55,000 scientific researchers, a ratio of 12 per thousand inhabitants, which represents an increase of 30 percent in the last five years.

In the year of the 25th anniversary of the FCT, which coordinates support for science in Portugal, she pointed out that in 1997 Portuguese investment in science was 577 million euros, equivalent to 0.56 percent of the Gross Domestic Product, and that in 2020 it was 3,236 million, corresponding to 1.62%.

Investment in science has also increased in the business sector, which in 1997 spent 22.5% of its budget on research and which in 2020 invested 57%.