South American science: Big players

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Jun 11, 2014
Lisa Palmer et al.

It may seem heretical to say so in the land of the beautiful game, but science in Brazil beats the World Cup — at least in a financial match-up. Government and businesses there invest some US$27 billion annually in science, technology and innovation, dwarfing the price tag for the football tournament, which tops out at about $15 billion.

Science in Brazil and many other countries in South America has come a long way since the dark days of the dictatorships just a generation ago. In Argentina, the number of science doctorates jumped nearly tenfold between 2000 and 2010; Peruvian scientists tripled the tally of articles they produced over the same period; and science funding is climbing in most countries.

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