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Tue, Dec 14 2021

  • 11:00 am to 12:30 pm
    The pandemic has shown that strengthening health systems in Latin America and the Caribbean is not only a health and social challenge, but also a productive and technological one. Faced with this situation, the countries of the region have made significant efforts to expand and adapt their capacities to the needs arising from the pandemic, especially in terms of research, development and production of vaccines, medicines and other medical supplies. Thus, a sector that had been relegated to the background in terms of its productive potential has emerged as key not only to responding to the current situation, but also to catalysing the economy and society. New companies, products and services are being created and more added value and quality employment is being created, which ultimately translates into a better quality of life for people. The panel will analyse recent initiatives in the region, examining in more detail those that have contributed to strengthening the health industry. It will also review the main productive and technological limitations and potentialities, as well as future prospects for progress towards health sovereignty in Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • 12:40 pm to 02:10 pm
    The digital revolution is transforming the economy and society increasingly rapidly. Widely available and uninterrupted connectivity has reached much of humanity thanks to the mass take-up of smartphones and the consequent access to information, social networks and audiovisual entertainment. The acceleration of technical progress in the digital realm has made the use of devices and applications employing cloud computing, big data analysis, blockchains or artificial intelligence routine. The technological revolution, combined with a change in the strategies of the companies at the forefront of digital technology use, has also led to the rise of global platforms. Digital technologies have played a key role in addressing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the potential benefits from their use are clearly constrained by structural factors, such as limits on connectivity (access, use and speed), social inequalities, productive heterogeneity and low competitiveness, and restricted access to data and information management, among other factors. The panel will address the main opportunities and challenges for the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, in order to contribute to the discussion and to action for the roll-out and use of digital technology and its appropriation, and to creation of digital solutions at national and regional level, to strengthen and support development processes.
  • 03:00 pm to 04:30 pm
    The digital transformation process refers to possible changes in the production processes and business models of existing companies, generation of new business capabilities, and especially development of new sectors. Because the universe of SMEs is characterized by heterogeneity, their responses to these challenges are very varied. Therefore, policies to support these agents of production must interlink various development proposals and tools that are aligned with the different stakeholders’ potential, needs and interests. The panel will discuss, based on specific experiences in Latin America and the Caribbean, how to develop support strategies for smaller companies, with a systemic approach and multiple levels of action that link different measures to drive digital transformation.
  • 03:00 pm to 04:45 pm
    To mainstream gender in science, technology and innovation systems, particularly in the STEM areas, an intersectoral, inter-institutional and multidisciplinary approach is needed, to address the various barriers that hinder and prevent gender equality in these areas and in society. This panel will examine experiences of gender policies in science, technology and innovation, to identify the main strategies formulated by the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, their lessons learned and challenges, from an inter-institutional viewpoint and from the perspective of stakeholders who are part of the process in educational and research institutions. The panellists, including key authorities and stakeholders from the scientific and research community, will address specific gender policies in science and technology adopted in recent years in the countries of the region and analyse the main strategies, lessons learned and challenges as regards intersectoral action by ministries of science, technology and innovation sector and ministries of gender equality and women’s autonomy (machineries for the advancement of women).
  • 04:45 pm to 06:15 pm
    The applications of space and satellite science and technology can contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. The use of these technologies can help ensure food security, reduce the risk level of natural disasters, prevent humanitarian crises, monitor natural resources and reduce poverty, as well as making important contributions to telecommunications and health. The panel will address several of these issues, which reflect the importance of space technologies for development. The panellists will also discuss the main bottlenecks encountered by countries in the region in developing these technologies, including limited financial resources, the lack of technologies and knowledge, and the lack of specialized institutions. In addition, they will analyse some national, regional and international initiatives, policies and strategies that can foster use of space and satellite technologies for regional development.
  • 04:45 pm to 06:15 pm
    The creation of an Andean centre for technological development and innovation in the lithium chain for electric batteries has roused the interest of several Latin American countries. Such an initiative has the potential to increase the efficiency of the use of resources for research, development and innovation, interlink complementary research between parties, identify possibilities for value added, enhance the relationship between academia and industry to move beyond the pilot stage to the industrial stage, and to foster regional value chains. The purpose of this intergovernmental technical dialogue is to contribute, with a space for discussion and recommendation of proposals, to responses to the problems that hinder technological development, innovation, value added and productive linkages in the countries of the area known as the Lithium Triangle. This is particularly relevant to the current global situation, with major trends in the energy transition and electromobility that will increase demand for lithium.