Original news source: SAVIA, ETISAAB Newsletter. November 2023. (spanish)
Margarita Ruiz Ramos is a professor in the Department of Agricultural Production at the School of Agricultural, Food and Biosystems Engineering (ETSIAAB), exsecretary of the Research Center for the Management of Agricultural and Environmental Risks (CEIGRAM) and member of the research group on Agricultural Systems (AgSystems). From December 1, she will also be one of the experts advising the European Commission on the upcoming climate challenges.
The academic has been recruited for the Leading National Experts program, through which the member states of the European Union send for a limited period of time (2 years, extendable for another 2 years) officials specialized in a subject in which the European Commission requires advice and management. One of these matters has to do with climate. Margarita Ruiz Ramos has therefore joined the Directorate General for Research and Innovation and, specifically, the Climate and Planetary Boundaries Unit to provide her expertise in these matters. The main objective will be to implement the European Green Deal and to address issues that deepen Earth system science, adaptation and Earth system science, climate change adaptation and mitigation, and biodiversity.
The teacher received the vacancy in July, through the Center for the Development of Inclusive Technologies (CEDETI), and had to work “against the clock” to make a decision practically “overnight”. And the reason for accepting was clear to her: “I thought it would be difficult to find a position again with a profile so in tune with my line of research and the experience I have had as a scientific collaborator in the Spanish National Research Agency”. Margarita Ruiz Ramos has spent six years collaborating in the management of international programs at this Agency, and this is precisely the reason why she has lost the “allergy to management” that she confesses is typical of researchers. “I am a researcher very focused on investigation and, over the years and due to the contact with the Agency, I have become more and more attracted to management,” says Ruiz Ramos.
In the journey that is about to begin, her work will consist of helping to implement, monitor and propose improvements that will then be passed on to the European Commission. In this sense, there are five main lines of action: policy development, with program implementation; policy analysis, which will allow the results to be studied; policy monitoring, to support policy dissemination; policy coordination, to facilitate the transfer of knowledge; and the final management of these programs. final management of these programs.
Change of plans
The professor acknowledges feeling very excited “to provide scientific support” but, at the same time, admits that it has been an “important decision” that has meant “changing the mental scheme I had made for myself”. Just a few days before receiving the call for applications, she won the competition for her Chair Professorship and her idea was “very different,” she says. In her mind, she envisioned a calmer year, focused on research, as Principal Investigator in a recently approved project of the Fundación Biosiversidad. This decision has meant “undoing all the plans I had and embarking on something new,” but she says she is “really excited” about this new stage.
In this new challenge she has just embarked on, she does not forget the support and backing she has found along the way. “Everything has been supportive at all levels and bodies I have had to turn to,” she says, recalling that the support of all her teaching colleagues, CEIGRAM, the department, the School, the Rector’s Office and the research group of which she is a member have been decisive in making the decision. A path that she is sure she will also pave for others with her knowledge.