Rodrigo García Valiente
Spanish Federation of Biotechnologists, Spain
Rodrigo García, Licentiate in Biotechnology by the University of Salamanca, holds the position of Vice-Chairman at the Spanish Federation of Biotechnologists, a professional entity dedicated to promoting the Biotech sector in Spain, which furthermore holds the most important Biotech popularization programme in the country.
Modern Biotechnology has a huge impact in our daily life. Likewise, Society has a huge influence in the development of Biotechnology, as it defines the main fields of study, the trends and even its funding, not only through its needs, but also by its opinions and beliefs. It is therefore vital to bring Biotechnology closer to Society, in order to avoid rejection, or even surprise, in order to inform them. Science must be usual, and specially Biotechnology as, sometimes, its importance can be unperceived, or even the advances it brings can be too ground-breaking, and be misunderstood. Biotechnology popularization is indeed not a short-term project; it will only show its full results over the years. However, efforts and resources should be constantly invested, always making the best use of them. Here we will discuss the main Biotech popularization efforts in Spain and analyse the factors of their success and impact, which have culminated in the nomination of 2014 as the Spanish Year of Biotechnology.