The National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) is an agency of the Ministry of Science, Technology, Innovation and Communications (MCTIC). It has as main attributions to support the scientific and technological research and to encourage the formation of Brazilian researchers.
Its creation dates to 1951. From the beginning CNPq played an important role in science, technology and innovation policies. Currently there are several ways in which CNPq is working. The Council has several programs like mobility grants and fellowships for students and researchers. They also finance projects.
CNPq has two important agreements signed with Sweden, both are Memorandum of Understanding. One is with Swedens Innovation Agency (Vinnova). The other is with between CNPq, the Funding Authority for Studies and Projects (Finep), the National Council of State Foundations for Research Support (Confap) on the Brazilian site and the Swedish Research Council (VR), the Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Science and Spatial Planning (Formas) and Vinnova on the Swedish site.
There is also an agreement with the Swedish-Brazilian Research and Innovation Center (CISB) located in São Paulo. In 2019, ten scholarships are available for Brazilians to undertake post-doctoral or sandwich doctorates at Saab partner institutions.
The Plataforma Lattes
In addition to this comprehensive activity of support to the students and researchers, the CNPq is also the creator and owner of the “Plataforma Lattes”. It is a platform that integrates databases of resumes, research groups and institutions into a single information system. A part of the system is the “Lattes Curriculum” a national standard which keeps track of publications and merits of students and researchers in Brazil. It is adopted by most of the country’s development institutions, universities and research institutes as an indispensable and compulsory tool in the analysis of the merits and competence when applied for funding in the area of science and technology.
CNPq has also created two directories. The “Directory of Research Groups” in Brazil is an inventory of groups active in the country. It provides information about human resources, lines of research and sectors of activity involved, knowledge specialties, scientific, technological and artistic production and patterns of interaction with the productive sector.
The “Directory of Institutions” was designed to promote the organizations of the National System of Science and Innovation to the condition of users of the Plataforma Lattes. It registers all organizations or entities that establish relationship with CNPq.
Women in Science
One of the Council’s fronts is the Women and Science Program launched in 2005. The objective is to stimulate scientific production and reflection on gender relations, women and feminisms in the country. Another important point is to promote the participation of women in science and academic careers. Several ministries and UN Women are partners in this initiative.