PIDS kicks off research info caravan in Western Visayas

The Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) has launched its information caravan in Western Visayas, utilizing the Socioeconomic Research Portal for the Philippines (SERP-P) and PIDS Corners networks.

The caravan is part of PIDS’ commitment to expand the dissemination of policy research information beyond Metro Manila.

To enhance information dissemination and engage with stakeholders in Region 6, the Research Information Department conducted a series of in-person engagements. These interactions made stakeholders aware of the Institute’s open-access initiatives through SERP-P and showcased its extensive collection of publications as invaluable research resources.

SERP-P (https://serp-p.pids.gov.ph), the Philippines’ first electronic repository of policy research and information, houses socioeconomic studies and materials from PIDS and various research institutions and universities in the Philippines. It fulfills PIDS’ mandate of facilitating collaboration between the government and research bodies while serving as a centralized hub for socioeconomic research data. As of April 30, 2024, it has 9,194 publications, and the network has grown to over 60 members.

Meanwhile, the PIDS Corners strategically place PIDS publications across the country to reach communities with limited access to development and policy-oriented materials. In 2023, 11,875 publications were used across 25 PIDS Corners nationwide by students, faculty members, and other library patrons.

Led by PIDS Senior Research Specialist and SERP-P coordinator Ezekiel Nicomedes and PIDS Librarian Jasmine James Cortez, the caravan began with a visit to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Region 6 office in Iloilo City. NEDA Regional Director Arecio Casing Jr. praised the SERP-P project, affirming the agency’s commitment to enriching the portal’s content by contributing publications.

The caravan also included an orientation at Central Philippine University (CPU), where over 30 CPU students participated. This event was jointly organized by the CPU Library and the University Research Center. Dr. Evelyn Grace Ayson, CPU University Research Center director, expressed strong support for promoting SERP-P among students and researchers. She also pledged to revitalize the university’s research journal and ensure its inclusion in the SERP-P database.

To foster greater participation in the SERP-P network and promote the use of PIDS knowledge products, the PIDS team collaborated with Northern Iloilo State University (NISU) in Estancia. They organized an orientation and exploratory meeting attended by college deans, academic chairs, faculty members, and graduate school chairs. Dr. Bobby Gerardo, NISU president, expressed support for SERP-P and indicated their intention to formalize the partnership with PIDS. This collaboration will provide faculty members and students in public administration and economics courses access to PIDS publications and those in the SERP-P database.

Additional visits were made to the Iloilo City Library and the Iloilo Provincial Library and Archives. Representatives from both libraries expressed interest in receiving printed materials, recognizing the increasing demand for additional PIDS print resources in public libraries.

This caravan is part of PIDS’ broader effort to ensure that valuable policy research information is accessible to a wider audience, supporting the country’s development goals through informed decision-making.

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