DOST: Science for Change Program bill to sustain PH’s innovation efforts

Published September 25, 2021, 2:54 PM

by Jhon Aldrin Casinas

Department of Science and Technology

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has underscored the importance of approving the Science for Change Program (S4CP) bill in order to sustain the country’s innovation efforts.

DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña said the agency refocused its research and development (R&D) initiatives on the development technologies that would be useful in this time of pandemic.

“Now, more than ever, the Filipino people are looking up to science, technology and innovation for solutions to their problems,” de la Peña said recently.

“The demand drives the Department further to continuously support our researchers, scientists and engineers (RSEs), and the aspiring ones,” he added.

With this, the DOST is lobbying for the passage of the S4CP bill which is seen to boost the country’s scientific innovations and inventions, and address the disparity in R&D funding in the regions.

“As an initiative to sustain innovation efforts, the DOST is lobbying for the passage of the Science for Change (S4CP) Bill,” DOST Undersecretary for R&D Rowena Cristina L. Guevara.

“Approval of the said bill would mean the continuation of the inclusive, equitable and sustained efforts for innovation, given the optimal use of our resources for R&D,” she added.

The Philippines’ innovation ranking slipped a notch in this year’s Global Innovation Index (GII), placing at the 51st spot out of the 132 economies.

But the country remained at the fourth spot among the 34 lower middle-income group economies, and at the 11th spot among the 17 economies in South East Asia, East Asia, and Oceania.

The Global Innovation Index (GII) is published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), a specialized agency of the United Nations.

The WIPO noted that the Philippines is one of four middle-income countries that are “systematically” catching up in innovation, together with Turkey, Vietnam, and India.

“All four Asian economies have romped up the ranks by an average of 22 positions in the past decade,” the WIPO said.

“It is noteworthy that these are particularly large economies, which have the potential to radically change the global innovation landscape for good,” it added.