Taking action today to benefit tomorrow: strengthening research
Green research policy: tackling the big issues
We Greens believe that publicly funded research should address the big issues facing society:
- Climate change and the conservation of the environment : We want to set new priorities in energy research, for example. Over the last 50 years, almost 90 per cent of all public research funding in the OECD countries has been spent on research into nuclear fission and nuclear fusion. And yet nuclear power only accounts for around 2.5 per cent of world energy consumption. We believe that the focus must shift to other fields of research: energy efficiency and energy saving, renewable energies, resource- and energy-efficient mobility, sustainability and decentralisation of energy generation, storage systems for heat and power. These are the areas most likely to produce sustainable solutions.
- Resource efficiency:Agro-genetic engineeringoffers few benefits for agriculture and consumers. We want to reorient research projects away from the development of genetically modified plants and animals and towards organic farming. Public research funding must develop the potentials of sectors that current research tends to overlook, such as organic arable and livestock farming and biological plant protection. We want to support research in the fields of white biotechnology and biomedicine wherever they potentially offer new solutions for environmental and resource protection or the treatment of disease.
- Social policy: What kind of social relations do we want in an increasingly diverse society? How do we safeguard quality of life, also for the very elderly, in the face of demographic change? How can the state improve security without resorting to constant surveillance? And how can food be produced sustainably and in sufficient quantity everywhere in the world? Green research policy must find answers to all these questions, which are of fundamental relevance for the future of humankind.
We Greens stand for more and better research. As part of that process, all research funding must undergo rigorous risk and technological impact assessment from the outset.
Creating the conditions for good research
Reforming science and research means putting the right conditions in place.
- For example, we want to encourage more women as well as people with a migration background to take an interest in MINT subjects – mathematics, information technology, natural sciences and technology.
- We aim to offer better prospects to female scientists and thus increase the number of women working in publicly funded research institutions The Green cascade model obliges these institutions to employ more women at every level.
- We want to make employment conditions in the sciences more family-friendly to encourage more young people to opt for scientific careers.
- We are working to adopt labour legislation for the scientific sector that combines permanent employment with appropriately adapted protection from dismissal, in order to take account of the specific needs of this sector.
- We want small and medium-sized businesses in particular to participate to a greater extent in applied research and development. We will encourage this by providing financial support to boost their innovation capacities. We have already unveiled an appropriate model of tax-funded research promotion.