PCAARRD and SEARCA inks MOU on research, tech transfer, and agri-incubation

The Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) and the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST-PCAARRD) recently inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to develop and promote cooperation on education, training, research, technology transfer, and agri-incubation for the Philippines and the rest of Southeast Asia.

The virtual MOU signing was done on April 29, 2021, via Zoom.

DOST-PCAARRD views the partnership as a critical strategy to develop and transfer innovative technologies, expand networks and mutually-share resources.

The Council has long realized that its science and technology (S&T) leadership in the AANR sector depends not just on what its existing network can do, but also on the functions, channels, and insights it can tap through partnership and collaboration.

“We envision this partnership to generate power for the people through our future capacity building activities and knowledge exchange. Let this partnership create possibilities of progress as we venture into joint technology transfer and commercialization projects. We also hope that this partnership will implement programs that will deliver positive socio-economic impact for the Philippines and the rest of Southeast Asia. Together, let us continue to build a competitive innovation ecosystem,” DOST-PCAARRD Executive Director Reynaldo V. Ebora said during the program.

SEARCA is a non-profit organization established by the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO) in 1966. It is mandated to provide high-quality graduate study and research in agriculture; promote, undertake, and coordinate research programs related to the needs and problems of the Southeast Asian region; and disseminate the findings of agricultural research and experimentation.

This new collaboration is a result of the meeting of the two organizations.

The participants included DOST-PCAARRD officials – Deputy Executive Director for Research and Development Feliciano G. Calora, Jr.; Deputy Executive Director for Administration, Resource Management and Support Services Melvin B. Carlos; and Director Noel A. Catibog of the Technology Transfer and Promotion Division; and SEARCA officials – SEARCA Director Glenn B. Gregorio; Emerging Innovation for Growth Department (EIGD) Head Rico C. Ancog, and EIGD Program Specialist for Technology Transfer Christopher T. Cabardo.

Discussed during the meeting were the common grounds for the proposed collaboration on an Academe-Industry-Government partnership to support, facilitate, and implement co-created and co-piloted agribusiness incubation, information, and technology transfer projects for the Philippines and rest of Southeast Asia.

To effectively address these initiatives, DOST-PCAARRD and SEARCA agreed to implement scientific and technological cooperation through joint research and development; support to technology transfer and commercialization research; exchange of information, education and communication (IEC) materials, and scientific/technical publications, and information; exchange of scientists and technical experts; capacity building activities (e.g. scholarships, internships, mentoring, and research enrichment/sandwich trainings); and joint conduct of and participation in scientific seminars, trainings, conferences, symposia, and workshops.

The MOU was signed by Dr. Ebora and Dr. Gregorio and witnessed by Dr. Calora, Jr., Dr. Carlos, Dr. Joselito G. Florendo, SEARCA Deputy Executive Director for Administration, and other DOST-PCAARRD and SEARCA officials and representatives present during the MOU signing. (Alexandra E. Tamis, Cyrill S. Estimado, Abigail F. Gueco, DOST-PCAARRD S&T Media Services)