"The Milky Way of the Brain". Edition: FOTCIENCIA16. Author: Carlos Vicente-Gutiérrez.
Is Oficina C the only mechanism that connects the scientific community and the Deputies?
Oficina C is a service offered by the General Secretariat of the Congress to all parliamentary groups. There are other formal and informal mechanisms to foster dialogue between the policy community and the scientific community. Oficina C is an additional link between scientific evidence and the legislative process.
What does scientific and technological advice to the legislative power mean?
Science advice is the process of gathering and using scientific and technological knowledge to inform public policy. For this, it becomes necessary to understand the needs of decision-makers and to know how to identify, summarise and contextualise the scientific evidence available. Science advice does not replace the legislative processes, but rather enriches them. Scientific evidence is one of the many aspects and factors that contribute to decision-making.
In the case of legislative scientific and technological advice, it is common for parliaments to have offices that react to Members of Parliaments' needs for information and scientific evidence. These offices function as a link between the scientific community and Parliaments and can offer their services through different models.
What is Oficina C and what it is not?
Oficina C aims to be a referral service for the Congress of Deputies that evaluates the scientific and technological topics with potential impact for Spain. To this end, Oficina C identifies issues of interest in the medium to long term on with a need for a scientific-technical focus. Our purpose is to contribute to medium- to long-term debates rather than to offer services to the immediate political agenda.
Oficina C will not provide fact-checking services to Deputies.
Oficina C does not conduct its own research. Its role is to connect existing scientific knowledge and the parliamentary work.
Oficina C does not do science policy or policy for science (focused on research activities' management and funding) but science for policy (focused on how scientific knowledge can inform public policies).
What is Oficina C scientific advice model?
The Congress of Deputies and the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT) have signed an agreement or the set up and the implementation of the Oficina C project. The General Secretariat of the Congress and FECYT jointly coordinate Oficina C.
Oficina C, in collaboration with the Advisory Committee, is responsible for periodically preselecting topics of relevance. These topics have medium- to long-term interest for the Deputies s and a high scientific-technical component. The shortlisted topics are submitted to the Bureau of the Congress which decides the ones to produce the Reports C. During production of the Reports C, the Team C works intensively on the literature search and consults and interviews dozens of scientists and technologists to prepare this scientific evidence notes. These reports are thoroughly reviewed and published in this website.
In addition, Oficina C organises various activities to bring the scientific community, policy and society closer together.
Where can I find the scientific photographs showcased on the Oficina C website?
The images included on this web page belong to FOTCIENCIA, an initiative run by the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT) and the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), with the collaboration of the Jesús Serra Foundation. Its goal is to bring science closer to the public through an artistic and aesthetic vision. Photographs are exhibited together with a description or written commentary.
Oficina C also seeks to promote the dissemination of scientific work to society.
Would you like to get in touch with us to suggest a topic?
If you belong to one of the institutions or associations represented on the Advisory Committee you can get in touch with your institutional contact point.
In addition, if you think that your scientific and technical expertise can contribute to the preparation of the ongoing reports, you can contact us by filling in this form.
What is the story behind the Science and Technology Office of the Congress of Deputies?
In 2018, the citizen initiative "Science in Parliament" (CeeP)- in collaboration with FECYT, the COTEC Foundation and supported the vast majority of Spanish scientific institutions - held a two-day get-together in the Congress of Deputies. There, Deputies and scientists discussed and shared views on different topics of interest for Spain. The activity was a simulated experience of what a real Science and Technology Office in Congress would look like. Following the success of this conference, on March 5, 2021, the Congress of Deputies and FECYT signed a collaboration agreement for the set of the Office. The association of Science in Parliament is nowadays part of our Advisory Committee.
Why do we call ourselves Oficina C?
The "C" represents many of the values we share: science, congress, chamber, collaboration, community, and citizens. Moreover, in our logo, the letter C has the shape of the House of Congress. The C does not end, but is cut because it symbolizes something that is not closed and is open to society and the future. Our entire visual identity is based on these concepts, and the letter "C" allows us to identify the project's own materials, both the method we follow (Method C), the scientific evidence reports we produce (Reports C), and our strategic impact plan (Horizon C).