Enhancing public RD&D data collection: The experience of Latin American countries
The goal of the workshop is to facilitate knowledge dissemination and promote an opportunity for peer exchange related to efforts and methodologies to track investments in clean energy innovation in selected Latin American countries (Brazil and Chile), along with interacting with the other members of Mission Innovation and interested countries, through the exchange of experiences on the status and processes of mapping innovation in clean energy.
The workshop aims to answer several key questions that can help countries accelerate investments in clean energy innovation in Latin America and beyond. How much and in what energy technologies are countries investing? What are the key indicators that can guide and support decision-making regarding investments in clean energy innovation? What are the main public policy instruments and mechanisms that countries have been adopting to promote these investments and how could they be improved? How did Brazil and Chile organize to report RD&D data? What were the main challenges and results of this process? What could countries that do not yet monitor and track energy innovation data learn from the experience of these countries?
On the Brazilian side, the Center for Strategic Management and Studies (CGEE) and the Energy Research Office (EPE) have been dedicating themselves to developing and improving the country's database on investments in clean energy innovation through the initiative Energy Big Push (EBP). These efforts have contributed to the progress tracking workflow in the first phase of Mission Innovation (MI), the leading global forum where governments connect to accelerate clean energy innovation. The data is available on the Inova-e platform in a transparent and free way, hosted on the EPE website and developed with the support of the British government. The EBP initiative and the Inova-e platform currently have the support of the EUROCLIMA+ Program, through the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the German Technical Cooperation (Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit – GIZ).
Recently, Brazil was also part, for the first time, of the most important publication of the International Energy Agency (IEA) on Research, Development and Demonstration (RD&D) Budgets, based on information generated within the EBP. The IEA has collected data on public RD&D starting in 1974 as part of its broader work to collect energy statistics. The database is published twice a year and has historically included IEA members. For the first time in 2021, it has expanded its coverage by including Brazil, an associated country, and would be willing to support other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean in the collection of public RD&D data.
For its part, Chile currently invests 0.36% of its Gross Domestic Product in R&D activities, with the Government's commitment to move progressively towards 1% by 2026. To do so, it is following the mission-oriented innovation approach, where the energy transition process is one of the challenges that prioritizes various missions to be faced in the short and medium term. In addition, the Andean country has a new Ministry of Science, Technology, Knowledge and Innovation, which contributes with the State Institutions to advance science and innovation. That is why, together with the Ministry of Energy, they annually survey public investment in research, development and innovation in the energy sector, as well as other related indicators. All the information generated is published in a transparent and easily accessible manner.
During the year 2022, the Ministry of Energy launched an update of its Long-Term Energy Policy, which defines the main guidelines to be followed by the sector by 2050. In addition, the Energy Agenda was published, an official document that prioritizes initiatives in the period 2022-2026. It is in both documents that energy innovation is identified as a fundamental element in the energy transition process that will lead Chile to be carbon neutral by 2050, in compliance with its international commitments. Taking into account the complexities of advancing in investment in R&D and innovation to achieve the Government's goals, the Ministry of Energy is committed to developing the first Observatory of Innovation for the Energy Transition. Thus, the country will be able to count on a tool that will allow, in addition to publishing the advances in public investment in energy innovation, to connect the different agents of the national innovation ecosystem.
In the sixth edition of the Innovation Mission (MI-6), led and organized by Chile in 2021, Brazil had an active participation sharing its experience with the member countries of this forum. Some examples are the webinar organized by the IEA prior to the MI event and a podcast produced by the EPE, with the participation of 14 allies of the EBP initiative, as part of the MI-6 platform. Beyond the importance of collaboration and exchange of experiences between the member countries of MI. It is essential that this knowledge and experience be disseminated and developed at the regional level, for which there are important synergies and opportunities in this context. Within the scope of the EBP, efforts are being made to expand the indicators of energy innovation in Brazil, as well as to strengthen the articulation of the interested parties at the national, regional and international levels.
Both Brazil and Chile are an active part of the MI, they also participate in the Regional Technical Forum of Energy Planners (FOREPLEN), a technical exchange platform to strengthen cooperation between countries on issues related to regional energy planning. The exchange of experiences between Latin American countries can inspire and engage elsewhere in the region and beyond to collect, monitor, track and accelerate clean energy innovation, as well as strengthen regional capacity to access solid evidence on the progress of clean energy. innovation to inform effective decisions towards a sustainable energy transition in the region.
The IEA’s role as the co-organiser of this event is facilitated through the Clean Energy Transitions in Emerging Economies programme, which received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 952363.