Presentation on theme: "Measuring Research and Innovation in Cuban Universities Concepción Díaz Mayans, PhD. Walfredo González Rodríguez, MSc. Ministry of Higher Education."— Presentation transcript:
Measuring Research and Innovation in Cuban Universities Concepción Díaz Mayans, PhD. Walfredo González Rodríguez, MSc. Ministry of Higher Education
The Cuban university model has evolved to humanistic, scientific, technological, and productive institutions of higher learning. In Cuba, the concept of Education for All and of Lifelong Learning implies working towards ensuring mass access of all members of society to university studies. Cuban universities engage in basic, applied, and strategic research; experimental development and technological innovation to increase the quality of all the main university processes.
Research and technological innovation is one of the Key Results Areas of the Organizations strategic planning. The Division of Science and Technology of the Ministry of Higher Education devised a project to determine the indicators to be used as a tool for the assessment of institutional performance of universities and research centres.
An improved system of indicators for the assessment of the scientific and technological performance of universities and research centres was implemented, thus making possible to assess the fulfillment of the objectives of each center. This system of indicators has been applied to all the universities and research centres directly subordinate to the Ministry of Higher Education of Cuba. This system of indicators has also been used as a tool to improve the monitoring and measurement of the scientific and technological innovation activity in Cuban higher education and has been useful for decision-making with regards to development policies and guidelines.
Scientific research in Cuban universities has been consolidated in the last 45 years, with an important support granted by the Cuban Government. In Cuba, there is a national scientific policy established at governmental level that sets the guidelines for Cuban scientific institutions, including the universities. That policy establishes research priorities for the whole system for science and technological innovation in Cuba. The need of improving the strategic planning for scientific and technological development and the measurement of the efficiency in the fulfillment of its aims and tasks clearly showed that it was necessary to develop and adopt a system of indicators that contributed not only to attain such objectives, but also to include new approaches and measurement criteria as well.
Sources of evidence: The international experience on indicators. The organization of seminars and workshops with national experts and policy-makers from all Cuban universities and research centres to reach a national agreement from the experience and results achieved by using the indicators, used to measure the university performance in the field of science and technology. The successful design and implementation of the project for establishing indicators for the measurement and monitoring of the scientific and technological performance of the universities and research centres and the modification of the aims according to the results obtained.
The Project was carried out in line with a national interest, although it also had an influence of the international conferences on indicators performed by the Ibero-American Network of Science and Technology for the Development (CYTED). The funds came totally from the Ministry of Higher Education of the Republic of Cuba.
The System of Indicators created to assess the scientific and technological performance of universities and research centres includes over 30 indicators, distributed in five groups. Those groups measure: 1.Scientific prizes and recognitions awarded; 2.Contribution to science; 3.Contribution to technology; 4.Social relevance and 5.Concrete economic, social, and environmental impact.
Some indicators used: The publications in refereed journals in the Science Citation Index and other international prestigious databases; Registered patents; International awards; National awards; Doctoral theses; The incomes by national and international project funding; The incomes by marketing of the scientific and technical services and the new products derived from scientific and technological activity in the national and international market; The economic, social and environmental favorable impact produced on the various fields of the economy and society, brought about by the results of university research.
The current system of indicators is an effective tool used by the Ministry of Higher Education of Cuba in the management of science, technology, and innovation in the universities. It has contributed to formulating policies and goals of the scientific and technological development in the short and medium term. In addition it has made possible to measure, with a higher accuracy, the scientific and technological performance of the universities and their contribution to the economic and social development of the country. Universities and research centers are ranked on the basis of their contributions and results.
It should be noted that some of our universities are already using this system of indicators to gauge and measure their own performance, thus enabling university rectors and deans to collect valuable information to improve research work.