Centro Ciência LP, operating from Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical (IHMT), Universidade Nova de Lisboa, is the outcome of an agreement sealed between the Portuguese State and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, following a proposal submitted to UNESCO by the Portuguese Government, that establishes the “International Centre for Advanced Training of Scientists from Portuguese Speaking Countries in Basic Sciences, as a category 2 centre, under the auspices of UNESCO”, in Lisbon Portugal.
To guarantee the effective cooperation procedures among Portuguese Speaking Countries scientific and academic institutions, in such a way to play an active role on countering ‘brain drain’ in Africa, and appeal to social responsibility of national institutions at a scientific level, nationwide and internationally;
- To assure the identification and systematic involvement of scientific and academic institutional partners in Portuguese Speaking Countries, with priority given to scientific and technological institutions with strong roots and endogenous to local activity, for instance in public health, engineering, agriculture, teacher training, energy, among others;
- To avoid the establishment of new structures and complex governance and management arrangements in Portugal and Portuguese Speaking Countries, concentrating on ensuring the active participation of scientists and R&D institutions in installing and maintaining the UNESCO Centre, thus keeping a lean and cost reduced organizational structure, based in an effective network of scientific institutions;
- To attract funding beyond the one provided by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT), namely through partnerships and external funding sources.
Funding for the Centro Ciência LP establishment and its activities aimed to provide Advanced Training of Scientists from Portuguese Speaking Countries, must be guaranteed by diversified institutional collaborations and investments to ensure its long-term sustainability beside FCT’s financial contribution.
This requires a significant effort of contacts and relationships with Trusts and Foundations, at an international level, with the European Commission and enterprises with activities in Africa.
Accordingly, the implementation strategy and the overhaul of the established legal framework must rely on the following principles:
- To mobilize academic and R&D institutions, at international level, with ongoing activities in Portuguese Speaking Countries, in such a way to strengthen these activities and establish effective collaboration networks in these countries, promoting ongoing actions and developing new horizons and opportunities;
- To stimulate agreements and partnerships with funders and donors in Portugal, Africa and Brazil, as well as stakeholders outside Portuguese Speaking regions, aiming to further develop (“IKfD – Initiative Knowledge for Development”, incorporating several ongoing partnerships, and others to be developed;