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Science problems and foundations
Renato Dulbecco Scientist
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You also throw yourself into projects that are on behalf of the foundations now, because surely with the foundations you wouldn't have the disappointments that you have had- there isn't a Regional Administrative Court in the foundations to hinder and halt things. Yes, the last thing that I did- it was the press conference the day before they started here- it was precisely this question of- it was something important in order to tackle one of the science problems, because the problem with science, I said, is the lack of acknowledgement of merit- this is fundamental, because without this you cannot create science- but, the other very important factor is precisely the fact that technology changes continuously and equipment, in a country such as Italy, generally does not keep up with these changes or at least follow from a distance, because they cost- they are very expensive, in fact it is a whole load of things- for which this effort from the Cariplo Foundation to try and help research from a technological viewpoint, seems to me to be very important, because it is trying to solve one of the problems. And I am convinced that, given the conditions in which these happen, there will be acknowledgment of merit, things will be put right from the point of view of assessing who should have these funds and who not and here, as you said, Regional Administrative Courts cannot intervene- I hope. No, then the setting of this triennial programme, I would say is on the whole very rigid- there is a board, there is an assessment committee and, therefore, this presentation also has had a lot of effect these days, which is, I would say, something that is restricted to Lombardy, so in Italy, but probably if these things don't exist, progress will not be made.
Ti ci getti anche nei progetti che ci sono da parte delle fondazioni adesso, perché sicuramente con le fondazioni non avrai certo le delusioni che hai avuto- non c'è un TAR nelle fondazioni che ostacoli e che fermi le cose. Sì, l'ultima cosa che ho fatto.- e c'è stata la conferenza stampa proprio il giorno prima che cominciassero qui- era appunto quella questione di questo- ecco era qualche cosa importante per affrontare uno dei problemi della scienza, perché il problema della scienza, ho detto, è il mancato riconoscimento del merito- questo è fondamentale, perché senza quello non si può far scienza.- ma, l'altro fattore molto importante è appunto questo fatto che le tecnologie cambiano continuamente e le attrezzature, in un paese come l'Italia, generalmente non seguono questi cambiamenti o perlomeno seguono a distanza, perché costano- sono molto costosi, insomma è tutto un insieme delle cose.- per cui questo sforzo della Fondazione Cariplo di cercare di aiutare la ricerca dal punto di vista tecnologico, a me pare molto importante, perché tende a solvere uno dei problemi. E son convinto anche che, date le condizioni in cui questo avviene, ci sarà riconoscimento di merito, le cose saranno fatte bene dal punto di vista di valutare chi dovrebbe avere questi fondi e chi no e qui, come dici, il TAR non può intervenire- io spero. No, poi l'impostazione di questo programma triennale, direi, che insomma è molto rigida- c'è un bardo, c'è una commissione di valutazione e, quindi, ha avuto molta ricaduta anche in questi giorni questa presentazione, che è una cosa limitata direi alla Lombardia, però, insomma in Italia, però probabilmente se non ci sono queste cose non si va avanti.

The Italian biologist Renato Dulbecco (1914-2012) had early success isolating a mutant of the polio virus which was used to create a life-saving vaccine. Later in his career, he initiated the Human Genome Project and was jointly awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1975 for furthering our understanding of cancer caused by viruses.

Listeners: Paola De Paoli Marchetti

Paola De Paoli Marchetti is a science journalist who graduated with an honours degree in foreign languages and literature from the University Ca’Foscari, Venice. She has been a science journalist since the 1960s and has been on the staff of the newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore since 1970. She was elected president of UGIS (Italian Association of Science Journalists) in 1984. She has been a Member of the Board of EUSJA (European Union of Science Journalists’ Associations, Strasbourg), and was its president in 1987-1988 and 1998-2000. In May 2000 she was unanimously elected president emeritus. She was a member of the National Council of Italian Journalists (1992-1998). From 2002 to 2004 she was member of the working group for scientific communication of the National Committee for Biotechnology. She has also been a consultant at the Italian Ministry of Research and Technology and editor-in-chief of the publication MRST, policy of science and technology. She has co-authored many publications in the field of scientific information, including Le biotecnologie in Italia, Le piste della ricerca and Luna vent’anni dopo.

Duration: 2 minutes, 11 seconds

Date story recorded: May 2005

Date story went live: 24 January 2008