Biel Barceló with Álvaro Nadal, the national minister for tourism and also the digital agenda. | @VicepresidencIB


The ministry of innovation, research and tourism - Biel Barceló's ministry - is to establish the Balearic Islands Research Institute. The general aims of this will be to retain talent and to act as a means of boosting Balearic business, and not just that which is engaged in new technologies.

The director-general of innovation and research, Lluís Pons, says that the institute will be constituted as a foundation of which various public institutions will be patrons. There could also be patronage from the private sector. He explains that there won't be a huge level of investment but that it will be sufficient in order to allow researchers to build on initial efforts and attract further investment. Ultimately, although the institute will be publicly funded, the plan is for it to become self-financing.

One source of this public funding will be tourist tax revenue: 300,000 euros are to be made available next year in setting the institute up. It is envisaged that it will be functioning some time in the second half of 2018, an important first step for which will be the appointment of its director. For Pons, this will be a scientist with experience of managing groups of researchers who will formulate terms and contracts for research.

The institute will be embraced within a new law of science in the Balearic Islands. There is such a law already, but it dates back to 1997 and is considered to be obsolete in meeting the challenges presented by new technologies.