The success of the Publishers Association of the Philippines Inc. (PAPI) 27th National Press Congress at Fort Ilocandia Resort Hotel is credited to effective partnerships, notably with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and other organizations. The event, held in Laoag City, Ilocos Norte from December 11-13, highlighted the theme “Media’s crucial role in encouraging agricultural scientific and technological innovations in Local Government Units.”

Ilocos Norte Vice Gov. Cecilia Araneta Marcos emphasized the vital role of media in promoting sustainable agriculture and its potential to inspire innovative farming practices. She highlighted the collaborative efforts between media, science, and agriculture as essential for the country’s development.

DOST, at the forefront of agricultural advancements, was praised for its commitment to reforming the agricultural landscape. PAPI National President Nelson Santos emphasized the significant role of DOST, with Secretary Renato U. Solidum serving as the keynote speaker.

Secretary Solidum emphasized the importance of collaboration between scientists and the grassroots, recognizing media as a crucial ally in bridging gaps and communicating the significance of science and technology to the Filipino people.

Engr. Sancho A. Mabborang, DOST Undersecretary for Regional Operations, highlighted the pivotal role of communication and the press in promoting science and technology. He stressed that the press, as the fourth estate, possesses the power to shape public opinion, influence policy decisions, and foster a culture that values scientific development.

Johnny Dayang, PAPI Chairman Emeritus, reminisced about PAPI’s establishment in 1974 and its continuous efforts to serve the nation and expand the frontier of press freedom.

Sen. Robinhood C. Padilla, Chairman of the Committee on Public Information and Mass Media, emphasized the media’s crucial role in disseminating information about government programs and projects.

Director General Jose “Joe” Torres of the Philippine Information Agency discussed the challenges of using artificial intelligence (AI) in today’s media, highlighting AI’s revolutionary impact on news and data gathering.

Other speakers, including Hon. Flordeliz Cabanlit-Fargas, Trece Martirez Cavite Executive Judge; Dr. Richard Nixon Gomez, General Manager of Bauertek Corporation; Mel Ciriaco of Unigrow Philippines, and Dr. Teresita Tabaog, DOST Region 1 Director, shared insights related to their respective fields of expertise. The event showcased the collective efforts of various sectors to promote collaboration, innovation, and the crucial role of media in societal progress.