Biochemist Pere Estupinyà always includes the following dedication in his books: “To passion, because in important moments, it’s the deciding factor.”
It’s not surprising that someone with a scientific background would appeal to the emotional dimension of his work. After all, in scientific fields it’s common to see months and months of research and innovation end up forgotten in a desk drawer, while researchers end up frustrated and may abandon the profession.
One of the keys to understanding this common sense of discouragement is the lack of investment in science. In spite of the economic recovery of the past few years, science and innovation aren’t seeing their fair share of the benefits. According to a 2016 report by Fundación Cotec, the number of researchers in the public sector has dropped by 17.2% in areas like administration (such as in public research organisations), and by 11.5% in higher education. In the private sector, a 3.8% decline has also been observed in R&D.
In spite of this fact, universities have worked to maintain investment in R&D&I, increasing their 2014 expenditures to €3.2 billion out of a total of €9 billion. Even so, this number is €438 million lower than the previous year’s and the smallest investment since 2010. The relationship between businesses and universities or research centres also remains insufficient—another problem that affects people with backgrounds in science. According to Píriz, the president of Crue Universidades Españolas, a nonprofit organisation that acts as an interlocutor between universities and the central government, the previous year is a sign that the relationships between businesses and universities must be further fostered in order to make the transfer of knowledge an issue for the Spanish state.
But it’s not entirely dependent on external factors—internal factors must also be considered. In order to carry out a project, we need to separate ourselves from excessive attachment to our own ideas in order to evaluate them. Ideas and knowledge must have the same competitive structure as a business, including its bureaucratic, strategic and realistic aspects. Naturally, after months of work in their field, researchers haven’t had the time or energy to acquire and use business skills. That’s why it’s time to provide a service that makes a change.
This is the objective of the Collider, the venture builder from Mobile World Capital that aims to transform knowledge into technological solutions by connecting scientists and entrepreneurs.
If you’re connected to a research center or university and have relevant knowledge in technological fields (AI, IoT, VR/AR, Blockchain, etc.), you have until 29 October 2017 to join us. We’re looking for people with scientific backgrounds who want to make their projects a reality with a highly innovative startup. We’re also looking for entrepreneurs with demonstrable experience in the creation of startups, or with the ability to lead and develop a business. The Collider is committed to providing you with capital, a workspace, expert mentors, support at future financing rounds and visibility.