BY; Rodolfo de Guzman
S&T Media Service
The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) is strengthening further its research and development (R&D) programs to encourage more young innovators, particularly in the provinces, to come up with new products and services.
“The DOST, in line with the Duterte Administration’s thrust of regional development, focuses on creating new R&D centers in the regions or niche centers for innovation,” DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña said, “by providing grants, facilities, and leadership programs that are linked to industries.”
Sec. de la Peña told this in his address before a crowd of young and tech savvy innovators during the recent Manila Tech Convention 2017.
The science chief revealed that DOST fosters strong partnerships with state colleges and universities that act as R&D centers and innovation hubs in the provinces where DOST matches the needs of the industries with the research institutions.
Secretary de la Peña further said that the DOST continuously works for convergence among stakeholders by supporting start-up businesses and linking them with business incubators and cooperators. He said that the DOST forges institutional collaboration with other government agencies like the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) where DOST gives support in promoting innovation of start up businesses.
“The Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development of the DOST has the Young Innovators Program that provides financial assistance to promising researchers. An example of this was the recent award given to a high school student who, I think, developed new software,” de la Peña added.
On the other hand, Senator Bam Aquino, in his keynote address, said that the Senate fully supports the initiatives of the private sector and other government agencies in promoting innovation by crafting laws that will provide a more conducive landscape for growth and development of start-up companies.
“As a social entrepreneur myself, I have always supported start-up companies like the GoNegosyo program, and now we filed the Start-Up Bill that will provide financial grants and tax breaks to create an ecosystem that will make our start-ups competitive in the global market, like what happened in Silicon Valley and Israel,” said Sen. Aquino.
The Senator also lauded the DOST for its trailblazing programs that address the need of emerging technologies that will enable the Philippines to be at par with other advanced countries.
“I commend the DOST for its programs like the Balik Scientist program, by advocating for the creation of the National Space Agency, and implementing programs to develop nuclear energy,” Senator Aquino added.