The Venezuelan Academy of Physical, Mathematical and Natural Sciences is one of the National Academies in the country. It is a scientific corporation of public nature oriented to the development and advancement of science. The Academy was established in 1917 by the Venezuelan Congress, with by-laws approved by the Ministry of Education, while the internal rules and regulations were directly established by the Assembly of Academy members. Its aims included to induce the development and advancement of the Physical, Mathematical and Natural sciences in the country, to analyze and comment on issues of its competence that the National Government submits for consideration, to study the educational methods for teaching the sciences and their applications, to gather and organize data on the resources of Venezuela, to analyze the application of these resources to research programs, and to establish relations with other academies or similar institutions at national and international levels.
The members of the Academy are: 30 Academicians (numbered members), 20 national corresponding members and 30 foreign members The activities of all the members are related to the different disciplines covered in the Academy: scientists with outstanding careers are potential Members of the academy if selected by the Assembly, as well as individuals with a distinguished professional or teaching career. All should possess a global vision of science and its policies, and impeccable references.
Younger scientists are becoming increasingly incorporated to the activities of the Academy by means of ad hoc specialized committees in fields like Biology, Physics, Mathematics, Engineering, Ecology, Earth Science and Geography. Four women have been incorporated as Members of the Academy, either Numbered or Corresponding Members, and four more have been recently incorporated as part of the specialized committees. In any case, the proportion of women within the Academy is far below the proportion of women scientists in the country.
The Academy's governing bodies are: The Assembly (integrated by the Numbered Academicians), and the Board of Directors. Activities are carried out by 11 Working Commissions, ad-hoc Commissions and Foundations that have their specific programs.
The Bulletin of the Venezuelan Academy of Physical, Mathematical and Natural Sciences is published periodically since 1934. Additionally, the Academy publishes books on scientific and technological subjects, through the Academy’s Publishing Foundation
The main budget comes from the Ministry of Education. Additionally, some grants are provided by private institutions or foundations.
Annual awards are the following:
- the Academy’s annual research award;
- the Arnoldo Gabaldón award for young scientists,(less than 40 years of age); and
- the Juan Alberto Olivares Foundation award.
FUDECI, Foundation for the development of physical, mathematical and natural sciences; TALVEN and RIO GUAIRE Foundations are non profit nongovernmental organizations (NGO), founded by the Academy of Physical, Mathematical and Natural Sciences. The Board of Directors of the three foundations is integrated by members of the Academy. FUDECI is mainly dedicated to the conservation of the environment; with a special emphasis directed to activities in the state of Amazonas, in Venezuela. The principal objective of this foundation is directed to the promotion the conservation of the environment by means of sustainable agricultural programs. The objective of TALVEN is concerned with maintaining a contact with Venezuelan scientists who immigrated to other countries. The RIO GUAIRE Foundation carries out environmental studies and research projects, related to the Guaire river which flows through the city of Caracas.
The Academy maintains international cooperation with IAP, IANAS (Steering Committee Member), TWAS and the Caribbean Scientific Community. It is also the focal point of the IANAS Programs devoted to
- Inquire Based Science Education