DOST Science Program Achieves Milestone, Wins 2022 UN Public Service Awards

DOST News

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The DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña, the brains behind many of DOST’s life-changing programs, projects, and services as he and other S&T officials have been bringing science closer to the Filipino people. (Photo credit: SDN — Science and Digital News)

TAGUIG CITY – The Science for Change Program (S4CP) of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has achieved a milestone, winning in the 2022 United Nations Public Service Awards (UNPSA).

During the UN Public Service Day event on June 22, 2022, the United Nations recognized the contribution of the Science for Change Program in “Enhancing the effectiveness of public institutions to reach the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”

The UN cited the S4CP, saying, “Your institution’s outstanding achievement has demonstrated excellence in serving the public interest and it has made a significant contribution to the improvement of public administration in your country. Indeed, it will serve as an inspiration and encouragement for others working for public service.”

DOST’s S4CP endeavors to significantly accelerate Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) in the country through massive increase in investment in S&T Human Resource Development (HRD) and Research and Development (R&D).

“This is a milestone for DOST. We are grateful to the UNPSA and honored for giving this prestigious recognition to the Science for Change Program. The S4CP has embarked on a journey to capitalize on the importance of R&D in achieving socio-economic development through research collaboration and cooperation between and among industry, academe, and research institutions to improve productivity and global competitiveness,” said DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña.

The S4CP is implemented under the DOST Office of the Undersecretary for Research and Development, currently led by Dr. Rowena Cristina L. Guevara, in cooperation with the DOST Regional Offices and Councils, including the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD), Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD), Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD), and National Research Council of the Philippines (NRCP).

DOST Undersecretary for R&D Dr. Rowena Cristina L. Guevara, the pilot behind the award-winning Science for Change Program or S4CP. (Credit: RCLG)

Four sub-programs comprised the S4CP, namely:

  • (1) Niche Centers in the Regions for R&D (NICER) Program,
  • (2) R&D Leadership (RDLead) Program,
  • (3) Collaborative Research and Development to Leverage Philippine Economy (CRADLE) Program, and
  • (4) Business Innovation Through S&T (BIST) for Industry Program which focuses on an accelerated R&D Program for capacity building of R&D Institutions and industrial competitiveness. These sub-programs put R&D in a position to contribute to making positive change happen in the country.

“The S4CP enables an inclusive innovation ecosystem through creating R&D opportunities for stakeholders and key industry players, which address societal problems that translate to community transformation and regional and national socio-economic development,” Undersecretary Guevara emphasizes.

Another DOST official chimed in on the role of S4CP in effecting positive change.

DOST Undersecretary for Regional Operations Eng’r. Sancho A. Mabborang (Credit: SAM)

“The S4CP brought about positive changes on the ground that our direct beneficiaries and our regional operations witnessed firsthand. And our partner SUCs/HEIs, RDIs, national, regional and local government institutions, private firms and industry associations share in this accomplishment of the United Nations Public Service Award,” notes the DOST undersecretary for Regional Operations, Eng’r. Sancho A. Mabborang.

(SUC stands for state universities and colleges; HEI is higher education institutions; RDI means research and development institutions.)

S4CP enhances the ability of SUCs, government RDIs, and private companies to leverage R&D in accomplishing the SDGs, by establishing R&D centers (SDGs 2, 3, 7, 9, 11, 13, 14 and 15), improving tertiary education (SDG 4) through R&D, addressing the disparity of R&D funding (SDG 10), and catalyzing partnerships among government, academe, industry and the civil society (SDG 17).

“Staying true to its slogan, ‘Science for Change Program is Science for the People,’ the S4CP continues to deliver R&D outputs, which aim to provide solutions, create positive impact, support wealth generation, and elevate the bar of public service for the benefit of Filipinos,” adds de la Peña.

UNPSA Awards is the most prestigious international recognition of excellence in public service. It rewards creative achievements and contributions of public service institutions that lead to a more effective and responsive public administration in countries worldwide. Through an annual competition, the Awards promotes the role, professionalism, and visibility of public service.

Watch the full virtual celebration at https://publicadministration.un.org/en/UNPSA2022.

Meanwhile, the DOST-S4CP will hold two virtual press conferences on June 23, 2022 featuring de la Peña and other DOST officials together with a representative from the the United Nations. Another virtual press conference will be held on June 24, 2022 at 10:30 a.m. featuring the DOST regional offices highlighting the impact of S4CP in Northern Luzon, National Capital Region (NCR), Southern Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.

Interested parties may watch the live broadcast via the DOST-S4CP Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/dost.s4cp. (✓)

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