Wednesday, January 02, 2008

R&D key to development

By: Bernadette E. Tamayo - Journal Online
THE Philippines still lags behind developed economies because it lacks creative technology transfer capability, Sen. Edgardo Angara said yesterday.

Angara, chairman of the Senate committee on science and technology, called for the promotion of a sound policy environment for the transfer and commercialization of results of government-funded research and development.

“As the world shifts into a more knowledge-based economy, we need an aggressive R&D agenda fully-funded by both public and private sectors. In fact, other countries have already set up innovation systems, which became the nucleus of their policy for economic growth,” he said.

“It has been said that strong productivity growth has been recorded in the United States, Japan and other European countries as their technological innovations sprung from high-quality research institutions,” he said.

Brazil, for an instance, has modernized its National Innovation System through a strong public R&D and industry linkage. “In this fast-emerging innovation economy, our country must indeed innovate or perish,” Angara added.

According to the 2007-2008 Global Competitiveness Report of the World Economic Forum, the Philippines ranks 71st out of the 131 countries in terms of technological readiness or ability to adopt technology from home or abroad to enhance the productivity of its industries. Singapore was ranked 7th, Japan 8th, Korea 11th, Hong Kong 12th, Malaysia 21st and Thailand 28 th.

To remedy the situation, Angara sponsored the Technology Transfer Act of 2007, which aims to create a support system for an effective use, management and commercialization of intellectual property resulting from government-funded R&D with the needs of the government to disseminate, diffuse and transfer economically relevant knowledge and technologies.

Under the measure, ownership of intellectual property generated from government-funded research shall be vested on the research development institute.

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