(SDN) — RESEARCH and development (R&D) took center stage on Wednesday, April 3, at the Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST) 4th National Research and Development (NRDC) Conference 2019.
The event revolved around the theme “Harmonized R&D towards Accelerated Growth and Prosperity.”
DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña said the event highlighted the “R&D initiatives of some of the key players of society — the government, academe, private institutions and civil society.”
Their R&D efforts concerned health, agriculture, industry, disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation as well Filipino engineers’ and scientists basic research.
In this piece are some photographs of the conference held at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), Pasay City, Metro Manila.
DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña reports on some of the R&D initiatives of the public and private sector agencies and organizations at the 4th NRDC.
De la Peña recalled that in last year’s edition the 3rd NRDC presented the various programs and accomplishments of the DOST.
He added that for the 4th NRDC, “we are very pleased that in addition to sharing what we at the DOST have been doing, we are also going to hear and see the significant contributions of our colleagues” from the Departments of Agriculture (DA), Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Information and Communications Technology (DICT), Energy (DOE), Health (DOH), Trade and Industry (DTI), and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).
Dr. Robert MacLean of the International Development Research Center (IDRC)) based in the United Kingdom. He presented a report on how IDRC does research, how research is measured, and what metrics are being used.
The NRDC, said the DOST boss man, is also an opportunity for building consensus and strengthening linkages involving the various sectors towards “the convergence and integration of our R&D efforts.”
DOST Undersecretaries for R&D Dr. Rowena Cristina Guevara (left) and for Regional Operations Carol Yorobe (second, right). They are two of the driving strength of the DOST showing women power in science.
Dr. Jaime Montoya, executive director of the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD), the go-to-guy for health-related funding for research projects.
At the center is Director Richard P. Burgoz, who pilots the S&T Information Institute (DOST-STII). He helps determine the direction of the DOST’s direction, particularly in relation with and how to leverage various media platforms to reach out to Filipinos across the nation.
Part of the more than 1,000 attendees of the NRDC.
The NRDC brought to the public consciousness the products or results of R&D projects funded by government agencies.
NRDC a venue to assemble researchers, institutions
Various speakers and paper presenters hammered on the importance of their respective projects, the vital role of transferring the technology they developed, discovered, or innovated for commercialization that will show R&D results would contribute to social and economic development.
As the DOST chief would say often, the result of any research must be useful and beneficial to the people. Otherwise, why do a research at all.
He lauded the collaboration among government agencies in pushing the nation forward.
“I am very pleased that the other government funding agencies have joined us in organizing this event. Banking on the goals of ‘AmbisyonNatin 20140′, the NRDC2019 clearly signifies the willingness and readiness of those of us in government to work together in stimulating the country’s progress and accelerating progress,” said de la Peña.
On the other hand, de la Peña did not fail to cite the partners of the government coming “from the academe and the private sector in pursuing this worthwhile endeavor.”
It is through the annually-convened NRDC that the government institutions’ R&D efforts being undertaken in collaboration with universities and R&D institutions are given the opportunity to convene and harmonize their shared objectives to ensure effective implementation and maximize the benefits to the Filipino people.
The DOST chief illustrated what he said was the convergence and integration of the partnerships’ R&D initiatives.
Among them, de la Peña pointed out, are collaboration with the Department of the Budget and Management (DBM) concerning the Digital Imaging for Monitoring and Evaluation of Government Projects Using Satellite Data and Imaging Technologies aimed at assessing projects’ progress funded from government funds, other government assets such as land and infrastructure to validate their status and existence.
Assisting Philippine startups via DOST-DTI-DICT linkage
He said another partnership is on the area of R&D on Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology, the DOST has strong partnerships with DTI, DICT, DOE, DPWH, Department of National Defense, National Water Resources Board (NWRB), and Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA).
In the partnership with DTI, he said the Electronics Products for Inclusive Innovation Center in Bicutan, Taguig City, inside the DOST compound “in order to provide a strategic facility towards the development of a more stable and economically beneficial electronics industry.”
Assisting startups founded by Filipinos is the focused of the tie up with DTI and DICT, he said.
On the other hand, the partnership with DOE is the establishment of a framework for the review, evaluation, monitoring and implementation of programs under the Science and Technology for Energy Application (STEA).
“Here we intend to focus on alternative and innovative energy technologies aligned with the government thrust of ensuring energy security and addressing air pollution,” said de la Peña.
Meanwhile, with the DPWH, being implemented is the program dubbed Climate Resilient Infrastructure Initiative (CRII) the objective of which is providing science-based information and R&D support for the planning and design of critical infrastructure which considers climate change trends and disaster risk reduction principles, he said.
Also covered by the DOST-DPWH partnership are the projects called Comprehensive Evaluation of Critical Lifeline Infrastructures and Construction Raw Materials in the Philippines using Concrete Photography and the Rubber and Waste Plastics as Reinforced Additives for Asphalt Binder-based Pavement Infrastructure, he noted.
“The partnership with DND, on the other hand, provides a framework for scientific and technical collaboration and other aspects of research, development and acquisition to achieve a Self-Reliant Defense Posture (SRDP) for the country,” de la Peña revealed.
For R&D on health, DOST linked up with DOH, Philippine Health Insurance (PhilHealth), the National Institute of Health, and CHED which is covered by the Philippine National Health Research System (PNHRS).
In the R&D for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources (AANR), the DOST collaborates with the DA and the DENR on a number of projects, one being the Field Verification Testing of Carrageenan Plant Growth Promoter (PGP) for Enhanced Growth and Induced Pest and Disease Resistance in Rice.
A foliar fertilizer derived from red-edible seaweed, the PGP was developed by the Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (DOST-PNRI.
In relation with research proposals, de la Peña said he would rather look at the output and the impact of R&D projects. (SDN)
(This story may need some updates.)