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Secret to progress (I)

Trust in the integrity and protection of data is crucial to ensure effective collaboration in the registration and dissemination of research results from the scientific community, which, being involved in the generation of new knowledge, depend on accuracy. and data confidentiality to ensure that your discoveries are not compromised by improper exposure of sensitive information.

Some examples illustrate the importance and correlation of statistical secrecy with the participation of the scientific community. In the European Union, Regulation (EC) No. 223/2009 on European statistics (with 27 countries and 24 official languages) underlines the importance of statistical confidentiality and establishes that the data collected should not be used to make administrative, legal or prosecutors against the people who provide the information, which has strengthened trust and facilitated cooperation between scientists and authorities in the field, allowing the obtaining of precise and exhaustive data on the state of science and technology in the region.

In Japan, the Statistics Law guarantees the confidentiality of information provided for these purposes and penalizes its improper disclosure. The Japan Science and Technology Agency uses this data to evaluate and improve the country's scientific and technological infrastructure, so, thanks to these protections, a high response rate has been achieved in scientific and technological surveys, providing valuable data for the development of its research policies and development (R&D).

China, with its growing investment in science and technology, has also implemented robust measures to ensure the confidentiality of statistical data through the Statistics Law. The Ministry of Science and Technology of China conducts the National Science and Technology Survey, which collects data on R&D activities throughout the country and it has been thanks to these confidentiality measures that China has managed to obtain exhaustive data, including , that R&D spending represented 2,4% of GDP in 2020. Confidence in the protection of information has been essential to achieve high participation by scientific and technological institutions.

The examples provided underline that statistical secrecy not only protects the privacy of respondents, but is also crucial to ensure cooperation in obtaining accurate and comprehensive data that promotes the advancement of scientific knowledge.

The English philosopher John Stuart Mill pointed out that “there is no better proof of the progress of a civilization than that of the progress of cooperation” and, precisely based on this maxim, is the protection of information as an essential act for the effective collaboration of the community. scientific in the registration and dissemination of R&D results, contributing to the sustainable development and technological progress of nations.

*The author is President of the National Observatory of Science, Technology and Innovation (Oncti)

@betancourt_phd

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