History of Colciencias

In Colombia, the process to consolidate the mechanism to facilitate techno-scientific knowledge has to do with the strengthening not only of the Nation Project, but also of the entities dealing with modernity. Aimed at the consolidation of institutionality, law 1286 of 2009 is enacted, which turns Colciencias into Departamento Administrativo de Ciencia, Tecnologìa e Innovación, (Administrative Department of Science, Technology and Innovation) and establishes the Sistema Nacional de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación (National System of Science, Technology, and Innovation) - SNCTI, reinforces institutionality in order to identify, transfer, produce, and provide the knowledge required for the welfare of the population and the development of the country and its regions.

Stages and Important Events of the Institutional Development Process of CTI in Colombia.

Background of the policy of science and technology (1940-1967)

  • Influence of international entities (OAS, BID, and AID) in the design and implementation of development policies: land, fiscal, educational, and State reforms.
  • Creation, as isolated events, of decentralized State institutions of investigation: Icetex, Instituto de Investigaciones Tecnológicas (Institue of Technological Researh), ICA, SENA, Incora, Instituto de Asuntos Nucleares (Nuclear Issues Institute), among others.
  • Agreements for international cooperation.

First Stage- 1968 to 1989

  • Creation of Colciencias and the CyT National Council.
  • Creation of Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología –CNCyT
  • Creation of post-grade programs
  • BIDI credits: Icfes-Colciencias.
  • Beginning of PhD´s in Colombia
  • International Forum about Politics, Science, and Technology (1987)
  • Mission of Science and Technology (1998)

Second Stage- 1990 to 1999

  • Enactment of Law 29 of 1990: Definition of the National Policy of Science and Technology.
  • Creation of the National Council, the Organization of the System of Science and Technology –CNCyT, and the Regional Committees of Science and Technology (Decree 585).
  • Adscription of Colciencias at the Departamento Nacionalde Planeación –DPN (Decree 585)
  • BID II Credit: Colciencias (1990).
  • Issuing of Law 6th of 1992 – Tax Incentives for CyT.
  • Mission of Science, Education, and Development (1993).
  • Approval of the first CyT Conpes (2739 of 1994).
  • Creation of the National Committee of Master´s Degrees and PhD’s.
  • BIDIII Credit: Colciencias (1994-1998).
  • National System of Innovation and Regional Systems (1995).
  • Issue of Law 344 of 1996 Resources from Sena for Competitiveness and Productive Technological Development Programs.
  • Creation of the Colombian Observatory of Science and Technology (1999).

Third Stage – 2000 up to now

  • Conpes Document 3080 – Science and Technology Policy 2000-2002.
  • Creation of Technological Prospective Program (2001).
  • Issuing of Law 643 of Fondo de Investigación en Salud (Health Investment Fund).
  • Formation of Regional Agendas of Science and Technology.
  • Launch of Scienti Platform (2002).
  • Support to National Programs of PhD Study Programs. BIRF Credit (2002-2003).
  • Injection of money into CyT through Law 344 of 1996 included in the Ley del Plan Nacional de Desarrollo (Law of National Plan of Development) of 2003.
  • Notification and support of Research Centers for the Excellence (2004).
  • Participation of Colciencias as a permanent guest in Conpes (2004).
  • Broadcasting of the children´s program Ondas in all the departments of the country (2005).
  • Reform of the National Programs of Science, Technology, and Innovation to lead them to the areas of knowledge (2005).
  • Revaluation of the CNCyT strategy (2008).
  • Enactment of the document: “Colombia siembra y construye futuro. Política Nacional de Fomento a la investigación y la innovación”, by CNCyT,  (Colombia sows and constructs future. National Policy for the Promotion of the Research and the Innovation) (2008).
  • Sanction of Law 1286 of 2009, which turns Colciencias into Departamento Administrativo de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación, (Administrative Department of Science, Technology, and Innovation), creates Sistema Nacional de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación, (National System of Science, Technology, and Innovation)  – SNCTI, and enacts other laws concerning these issues.

In the past few years, development in Science, Technology, and Innovation-CTI has fostered a new method to create science in terms of intra, inter, multi, and trans- disciplinariety, which is validated by social, cultural, and regional contexts where it has been applied and by the values and decisions of public policies.

Directores de Colciencias 1968 – 2009

  • Alberto Ospina Taborda, 1969 - 1972
  • Efraim Otero Ruíz, 1972 - 1983
  • Eduardo Aldana Valdés, 1983 - 1986
  • Pedro Amaya Pulido, 1986 - 1990 +
  • Clemente Forero Pineda, 1990 - 1994
  • Fernando Chaparro Osorio, 1994 - 1998
  • Álvaro Mendoza Arango, 1998 - 2000
  • Margarita Garrido de Payán, 2000 - 2003
  • María del Rosario Guerra de Mesa, 2003 - 2006
  • Felipe García Vallejo, 2006
  • Juan Francisco Miranda Miranda 2006 - 2010
  • Jaime Restrepo Cuartas 2010 - 2012
  • Carlos Fonseca Zárate 2012 - 2013
  • Paula Marcela Arias 2013 - 2014