Paulo Rebêlo 16 June 2004 Source: SciDev.Net Brazil has opened a DNA bank to preserve genetic material of its endangered plant life. Its goal is to help protect rare plants threatened by extinction in a country that has the world’s greatest variety of plant species. The DNA bank, which is based at the Jardim Botânico (Botanical Garden) in Rio de Janeiro, employs five researchers. They plan to collect at least 1,000 plant species each year to ‘deposit’ in the bank.
Paulo Rebêlo 5 May 2004 Source: SciDev.Net Chile’s government has launched a wide-ranging programme to increase the use of computers and boost the role of information technology (IT) in the country’s economy. As part of the initiative, the government aims to establish fast Internet connections in all universities, and at least 80 per cent of schools, by 2006. The Digital Agenda initiative, which aims to transform Chile into a digital country by the year 2010, will seek to attract foreign
Paulo Rebêlo 20 February 2004 Source: SciDev.Net [RECIFE] Brazilian scientists are campaigning to reduce the bureaucracy involved in bringing scientific equipment into the country. In a declaration to be presented shortly to the ministry of science and technology, more than 300 Brazilian researchers state that “countless scientists have been waiting for years to receive equipment. Customs policies produce a lot of bureaucracy just to obtain a few microlitres or a simple reagent”. The scientists call for new customs procedures that
Paulo Rebêlo and Katie Mantell 30 January 2004 Source: SciDev.Net [RECIFE] The Brazilian government has negotiated a US$5 million reduction in the fees it pays to allow many of the country’s researchers to gain free access to electronic versions of a large number of scientific journals. The government’s ‘journal website’ (Portal de Periódicos), allows researchers across the country to access the full text of thousands of international journals, magazines and databases covering a broad range of subjects. Last year, the
Paulo Rebêlo 14 January 2004 Source: SciDev.Net [RECIFE] A failure by the Brazilian government to provide much-needed new teaching and research posts in universities is preventing many researchers with doctoral degrees from finding suitable employment. This is the conclusion of a report published last month by the Brazilian Society for the Advancement of Science (SBPC), based on statements from universities, public institutions and thousands of unemployed new PhD holders. The report, which was written by the SBPC’s regional division in