GENERAL SANTOS CITY -- The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) held its 2023 Call Conference on 28 February 2023, as the last leg of its nationwide campaign. The conference aims to discuss the agency’s thrusts and priorities in line with upcoming call for research and development (R&) proposals, with the goal of boosting innovation in the Mindanao region.
In a video message, DOST Secretary Renato U. Solidum, Jr. said, “Our efforts are geared towards attaining higher productivity and better quality of life. Our long-term vision in DOST is to achieve this by providing world-class scientific, technological and innovative solutions. And we cast this vision to you today.”
To make this into a reality, Sec. Solidum urged researchers and scientists in Mindanao to submit R&D proposals that align with DOST’s priorities and will provide tangible solutions to Filipinos. He also emphasized the importance of collaboration between the government, academe, and the private sector in driving innovation and economic growth.
The DOST funding has enabled the scientific community to deliver and create an impact on the economy, and the DOST is ready to facilitate the interaction between industry players, local and international chambers of commerce, and investors to translate technologies into job creation and sustainable enterprises.
Prior to the event itself and as part of the Call Conference - Mindanao leg, DOST officials and staff visited various projects funded by the DOST. One of the projects highlighted the success story of the Saxonylyn Scifish Farm funded by the DOST’s Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP), which aims to assist MSMEs to adopt technological innovations that will improve their products and operations. The farm previously used simple and improvised materials for egg incubation, and nearly two years after becoming a DOST Region XII SETUP partner, the farm has transformed into an intensive farm with improved facilities. Tanks used in larval and nursery rearing are now made of fiberglass, which allows for an increase in culture from larvae to fingerlings, increasing production by 500 percent. As the business continues to expand, the farm was also able to employ more workers even at the height of the pandemic. Moving forward, the owner hopes to get more funds in order to produce more processed products and operate her own mini-feed mill.
“DOST is realigning our resources to ensure more equitable operations at the national, regional, and provincial levels to spur development not only in the metropolitan Manila but also to other regions of the Philippines as well,” underscored Undersecretary for Scientific and Technical Services Maridon O. Sahagun
Additionally, Usec. Sahagun challenged researchers from universities, colleges, and institutions to create relevant proposals that will yield a positive impact on communities, assuring them that DOST will support their research all the way to technology transfer and commercialization.
The DOST Council Executive Directors also tackled their respective research areas and priorities for the upcoming call for proposals—Dr. Enrico C. Paringit for the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD), Dr. Jaime C. Montoya for the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD), Dr. Reynaldo V. Ebora for the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD), and Dr. Bernardo Sepeda for the National Research Council of the Philippines (NRCP), with discussions on the Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Protocol, DOST Project Management Information System (DPMIS), and the Science for Change (S4C) Program.
The submission of proposals will be open from March 1 to May 31, 2023, through the DOST Project Management Information System (DPMIS). For more information about the 2023 Call for Proposals, please visit the DOST website at www.dost.gov.ph
The 2023 Call Conference is a part of DOST’s continuous efforts to create a nurturing environment for the science community and support the national economic agenda. With this conference, DOST aims to establish a dynamic ecosystem where business and science are linked to provide a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship. (DOST)