IBEC Director Josep Samitier is one of the four delegates for Spain nominated to take part in the new Working Party on Biotechnology, Nanotechnology and Converging Technologies (BNCT) of the OECD, which will start work in January 2015.
The Working Party for BNCT will be a body of representatives from all over the world combining to provide expert input on technical areas such nanoengineering and on issues related to the convergence of technologies. They will guide the development and implementation of global BNCT-related projects, identify funding sources, and provide a voice for BNCT matters to the different national systems.
Selected by the Secretary General for Science, Technology and Innovation of the Spanish Ministry for MINECO, the other members for Spain are Zuleika Saz Parkinson of the Fundación Investigación Biomédica del Hospital Clínico San Carlos, Madrid; Paula Queipo Rodríguez of PRODINTEC technology centre, Madrid; and Luis Miralles de Imperial of the Deputy Directorate-General for Europe and International Relations at MINECO.
It’s not the first time IBEC’s expertise has been sought by high-level think tanks, thanks to its first-hand experience of the fusion of life sciences and engineering. In 2012 former director Josep A. Planell was Sherpa in the KET High Level Group on nanotechnology, and in 2013-2014 the institute was advisor to the EC and Horizon 2020 under the RO-cKETs study.
The OECD dates back to 1960, when 18 European countries plus the United States and Canada joined forces to create an organisation dedicated to global development. Today, their 34 member countries span the world. You can find all sorts of fascinating statistics comparing all the OECD countries in the OECD Data Lab (http://www.oecd.org/statistics/), ranging from work-related figures useful for presentations – such as percentages of women researchers or gross domestic expenditures on R&D – to more curious statistics such as teachers’ salaries, marriage rates, or rates of teenage drunkenness.