Elena Castro-Martínez was awarded a PhD in Industrial Chemistry in 1983 and between 1981 and 1987 she did some postgraduate courses (“Environmental Engineering”, “Business Management” and "Research Organisation and Management in the Public Administration").
She is a tenured scientist working in INGENIO (CSIC-UPV), where she develops research activities in the field of innovation studies and more specifically on science and innovation policies, knowledge transfer and exchange processes.
Between 1988 and 1993 she was Advisor to the Secretary General, and Deputy Director of the Technology Transfer Office at the General Secretariat for the National R&D Plan (CICYT) (Research and Technology Interministerial Commission). She was responsible for founding the Technology Transfer Offices Network (OTRI network) of Spanish universities and public research centres and for managing the science-industry cooperation programmes launched under the National R&D Plan. In 1993-94 she was advisor to the Secretary of State of Universities and Research (Ministry of Education and Science), working on research and technology indicators and R&D budgets. In 1995 she was advisor to the Secretary General for the National R&D Plan working on the definition of the III R&D National Plan (1996-1999), and was a member of the Committee responsible for designing a programme to promote the cooperation between research, universities and firms (PACTI). She has also been in charge of the Spanish Council for Scientific Research's (CSIC) Technology Transfer Office in the Valencian region (1995-2004).
She has participated in additional R&D projects, financed by national, regional and European funds in areas like public R&D and innovation policies, science-industry relations and the management of knowledge transfer in universities and public bodies. She regularly participates (and leads) R&D and consultancy contracts with different international, foreign and Spanish entities, working on the analysis of regional innovation systems and the design of R&D and innovation policies and instruments as well as designing R&D and innovation strategies.
She usually teaches in official master and specialization courses on management of science and innovation in Spain and in Latin American countries (Argentina, Bolivia, Brasil, Colombia, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, México, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, Uruguay and Venezuela).
From 2010 to 2015 she was Advisor of the CSIC’s humanities and social sciences scientific commission; since 2013 she is a Member of Advisory Committee of Iberoamerican network for R&D and innovation indicators (RICYT).