While government officials do not seem to be budging from their latest offer with regards to the on-going salaries disputes with university teaching staff, there is at least some good news this week in the Argentine world of academia. The Ministries of Science and Technology and Education have announced that they will be creating 410 teaching positions for researchers excluded from Conicet, the country’s leading scientific funding and research body.
In December 2015, there was public uproar after the government announced that Conicet would have to reduce its intake of new scientists by 60 percent in 2017 due to budget cuts, and the protests have continued since.
Now, following a third negotiation meeting between authorities and various representatives acting on behalf of the researchers, which took place last Thursday, the Government has offered at least some restitution. 410 teaching posts will be created for researchers who have been prevented from starting their research programs with Conicet, despite having passed all of the entry requirements and application stages.
“The agreement anticipates the creation of 410 teaching positions to be destined for the candidates for the career of researcher who could not join the Scientific and Technical Research Council (Conicet) in 2016,” explains a statement signed by representatives from the two ministries.
The teaching positions to be created will form part of the official Plan to Strengthen Research in National Universities and will also be complemented by a special call from the National Agency for Scientific and Technological Promotion, which will finance research projects and equipment through their scheme entitled ‘Scientific and Technological Oriented Research Projects’.
The Plan will be monitored jointly by the Ministries of Science and Technology and Education and the National Inter-University Council.