MINECO

Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad

Introduction

The Ministry of Science and Innovation was created in April 2008 and concentrates the main responsibility for research policy in Spain. It is in charge of the development and implementation of research policy in all sectors, the promotion and facilitation of links between science and innovation and has a central role in the design of the National Plan for Scientific Research, Development and Technological Innovation.

Funding in industrial biotechnology

During the last years the number of granted projects on Industrial Biotechnology has substantially increased, reaching an annual budget of more than 3 M€ within the National Programme of Biotechnology in 2008, that constitutes around 20% of the total budget of this programme. The Chemical Science and Technology Programme was also dedicated to subjects related to Industrial Biotechnology, with an annual average budget of 1.5-2 M€. Through the National Programmes TRACE (PETRI) and PROFIT, research projects were co-financed together with industries. Biotechnology has been also funded by the Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI), a public organization that was under the Ministry of Industry and now depends from the Ministry of Science and Innovation. Its objective is to help Spanish companies to increase their technological profile. CDTI funds research projects on Biotechnology with an annual average budget of 11 M€.

Current and future national calls that include Industrial Biotechnology

The MICINN will fund both basic and applied research projects, innovation projects, human mobility and infrastructures for research by means of different specific programmes. According to the National Plan for Scientific Research, Development and Technological Innovation for the period 2008-2011 (NP2008-2011), the MICINN will launch yearly calls for proposals on basic or fundamental research, including research undertaken by the private sector, which are not thematically oriented and thus will not execute a specific programme on Industrial Biotechnology. Proposals will be selected for granting after a peer review process. Industrial Biotechnology will be also addressed in two out of the five thematic Strategic Actions considered in the NP2008-2011, namely Strategic Action in Health and more specifically the Strategic Action on Biotechnology. The aim of the Strategic Actions is to cover the science and technology areas where the Government is focusing most decisively. The Strategic Action on Biotechnology will include Industrial Biotechnology as one of its six strands in which it is structured.

Transnational cooperation is also considered by the NP2008-2011 within the R&D Internationalization Programme. All initiatives and activities designed to increase levels of internationalization, participation in international R&D&I activities by national stakeholders, and cooperation in research will be articulated within this programme, including international collaboration within the new ERA initiatives.