Horror made science an ideology

reductions in science, technology and innovation; accusations without evidence or basis and unlawful prosecutions of scholars by criminal courts; Amendments to regulations and systems of postgraduate studies; A drop in scholarships—abolition of programs altogether in some cases—and now it’s a wholly brutal bill. Wow, a huge catalog of Dr. Alvarez Buela’s massive crap on top of Conacyt.

One of which is to add the dismissal and imposition of officials in public research centers such as CIDE or INAOE; Having encouraged the disappearance of trust funds to support research and science.

To this must be added her dishonest conduct as a public official: she had no qualms with naming her mother an honorary national scholar, the highest distinction Consett made. Dr. Elena Doronsoro Roces, mother of Álvarez Buela, did not meet the requirements to be eligible, as noted by Dr. Juan Pablo Pardo Guerra. But, hey, at 4T, system cowardice and nepotism outweigh advantages.

and icing the cake of absurdity and insult to the university community: creating a special committee so that Alejandro Gertz-Manero can be named Researcher III Level National at the IIS; It doesn’t matter that their plagiarism has been documented and proven before (it’s better not to give Jasmine ideas…).

All of the above and more have caused a decline in academic freedom in our country. This is according to the “Free to Think 2022” report, produced by the Association of Scholars at Risk, and the Mexico Index of Academic Freedom, prepared by the V-Dem Project. In the latter, Mexico moved from the highest category in 2011 with a rating of 0.92, which means all freedom, to falling to the second category in 2021 with an index of 0.76. That is, with this government’s freedom to investigate, there was a setback.

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Dr. Alvarez Puglia is not interested in science; It seeks political control and even this disguises it as an ideological interest. If the introduction of ideology into science gives horrific results, you can already imagine the catastrophe of the scientific and technological sectors as a whole foreshadowing political control. Reductions in science, in a country where so little has already been invested, would have enormous negative effects. For example, while different countries got their COVID vaccine formula in less than a year, tests of the Patria vaccine in Mexico only started in September 2022. The difference between understanding science as science and making it a matter of ideology translates into saving lives or wasting time.

Crafting the CGLI Initiative was a process in which no self-respecting scientist or researcher was involved. In fact, more than 2,000 scientists have signed a letter calling for a new proposal. The Mexican Academy of Sciences, the Mexican Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Medicine have come together to note that scientific work that has taken years to build is “at risk” because of this initiative.

The current law stipulates that national investment in scientific research and technological development must be increased annually until it reaches the international minimum. And it is that while Mexico invested 0.2% of GDP in research and development during 2021, the global average as a fraction of GDP is 2.3%; Israel invested 4.95% and the United States 2.84%. But Alvarez Buela’s new initiative no longer even thinks about the previous goal. Nor in terms of training researchers to promote the country’s scientific development. There is no interest in science. The budget for this item has not been increased in the current six-year period.

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The state intends to limit the freedom of the investigation (and its head) to what the government, in turn, wants to do. Dr. Alvarez Buela considers contemporary scientific knowledge to be “rational, neoliberal, hegemonic, and hegemonic.” We forget that science has no attributes. It is impossible to say whether it is “national” or “neoliberal”. Sometimes not even if it’s good or bad…

By Veronica Malo Guzman
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