Innovation to be focus of Turkey’s National S&T Policy Strategy for 2003-2023

14 September 2001 Of the five key projects identified as the basis for Turkey’s National Science and Technology (S&T) Policy Strategy for the next twenty years, three concern innovation.

The country’s strategy for technological innovation has as its cornerstone a range of forward-looking studies. The government intends to undertake a technology foresight exercise to determine long-term strategic goals and is preparing ‘Technological Balance of Payments’ tables. It will also be employing continual monitoring of the national innovation system to establish effective mechanisms for promoting innovation.

The other two key projects will assess the country’s institutional infrastructure with regard to public research and survey the national pool of researchers with th goal of reversing Turkish brain drain. The personnel survey will look at researchers’ education, occupation, research qualifications and geographical distribution.

The country’s commitment to fostering innovation has been stepped up in the wake of the World Conference on Science. Recent amendments to the six-year old R&D assistance programme to industry launched by the Industrial Innovation Support Board and Foreign Trade Department in 1995 have increased R&D assistance by up to 60% for projects developing new products and production technologies and methods.

As part of its drive to promote university–industry cooperation, Turkey plans to establish two additional research centres within state universities, bringing the total number to five. The Olive Technologies Research and Application Centre will take up residence at Uludag University in Bursa, while the Heating, Cooling and Air Conditioning Research Centre will be housed in Yildiz Technical University in Istanbul.

Source: Permanent Delegation of Turkey to UNESCO.