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Charles R. Hale, Director SRH 1.310, 2300 Red River Street D0800, Austin, TX 78712 • 512.471.5551

Spring 2006

LAS 381 • SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND DEVELOPMENT: MEXICO'S CHALLENGE AND USA'S ROLE

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
39794 W
5:00 PM-8:00 PM
SRH 1.313
PARADA AVILA

Course Description

Mexico is facing the challenge to transform its economy into a new one based on human capital and R&D to produce high value added products and services, increase the economic growth and income per capita. At the same time the country is facing the challenge to reduce poverty (30-40 million) and provide education of quality to 33 million children and young population that will constitute the work force in the next 10-15 years. The natural resources, and low cost manufacturing activities are no longer competitive advantages for the economic and social development of México. With more than 30 free trade agreements with different countries, the country is dealing with fierce competition from different competitors around the world and losing competitiveness. During the last four decades Mexico has built a small but competitive scientific and technological system with more than 100 universities and public research centers. The total number of researchers is around 33,000 and 12,000 of them are in the National Researchers System. The National spending in R&D is 0.4 % of the GDP corresponding 65 % to the public sector and 35 % to the private sector. In the last years , the Congress, the Government (Federal and States) and the private sector have shown a growing interest to support and utilize science and technology as an important tool to solve problems of public interest and to increase the competitiveness of the enterprises, as a consequence of the new Law of Science and Technology launched in 2002 and the new instruments derived from it. In spite of that, the number of researchers, patents and the budget for S&T in Mexico are behind of countries like Brasil, (1%GDP), Spain (1.2% GDP), Corea (2.7 %GDP) and USA(2.6%). This is due in part to the lack of Fiscal Reform to provide more resources from the government and also an only incipient culture of innovation in the industrial sector. The course will examine the following components : 1. Investment in R&D and its impact on economic growth and competitiveness. Knowledge, technological change and innovation have been shown to be one of the most important contributors to economic growth and competitiveness in developed countries. Analysis and overview of the different economic models that Mexico has implemented in the last five decades will be discussed and also the perspectives for the oncoming years. 2. Description of the Mexico"s Public Scientific and Technological System Research Universities; Public Research Centers ; The National Researchers System ; The Graduate and Scholarship Programs. Science and Technology indicators and benchmarking with other countries. 3. Legal Framework for Science and Technology. The 2002 Law of Science and Technology ; The new law for CONACYT (National Council for Science and Technology) ;The IRS Law and the Tax Incentive Program for R&D expenses in private companies ; Description of other regulatory norms for S&T. 4. The National Program for Science and Technology 2001-2006. Objectives, Strategies and Priorities; Programs, Instruments and Mechanisms to support graduate studies and R&D projects (Basic, Applied and Technological Development); The Research Funds ; The Regional approach for the development of S&T in the 32 states of the country ; The role and importance of International Cooperation, Strategy and Programs; The programs for the diffusion and teaching of S&T for children and general society, 5. The Role and Importance of the Private Sector in S&T. The Tax incentive program and its impact in the R&D investment in the Mexican companies ; Programs and Financial Instruments (credit, seed and venture capital and grants) to support incubators, start ups and new ventures based on scientific and technological developments made in Mexico ; Public- Private Consortia for innovation. Best practices for management of innovation and product development in the companies. The course will conclude w

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