Filipino researchers, innovators, scientists, and technologists from different parts of the country are expected to participate in the 85th General Membership Assembly and Annual Scientific Conference of the National Research Council of the Philippines with the theme, Policy Research for Legislation, which will be held this March 14, 2018 at the Philippine International Convention Center.

No less than Senate Committee Chair for S&T, Senator Paolo “Bam” Benigno Aguirre Aquino IV, will set the tone for the scientific conference with his keynote presentation titled, R&D Legislative Directions for Countryside Development, which will be complemented with the plenary presentation of DOST USec for R&D, Dr. Rowena Cristina L. Guevara titled, Leveraging Science, Technology, and Innovation Policies and Legislation:  The DOST Science for Change Program.  Senator Bam Aquino is a staunch supporter of the science community. Last March 6, 2018, he signed the recommendation for the institutionalization of the DOST Balik Scientist Program, together with Congressman Enrico Aristotle Aumentado who also strongly supports S&T.

Five simultaneous scientific sessions will be held to come up with appropriate research-based recommendations towards strengthening legislations on governance, public health, food security, and international linkage.  The Session speakers with their respective papers are:  Dr. Gilberto M. Llanto, President of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) -- Imperatives in Policy Research and Advocacy in R&D Legislation; Dr. Leonila F. Dans and Ms. Beatriz S. Bayani of the Department of Health (DoH) – Priority Areas in Philippine Public Health Policy Research; Dr. Juan M. Pulhin, Scientist III of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) – Agriculture and Natural Resource Governance and Concerns in the Philippines:  A Challenge in Defining Legislative Agena; ASec. Ma. Hellen B. De La Vega Assistant Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) – Defining ASEAN Research Agenda for the Future, and Dr. Clarita R. Carlos of UP Diliman --  Policy Research for Local Government Units in the Context of Federalism.

Also considered a highlight of this event is the awarding of Outstanding Achievement Award to nine NRCP Members whose exemplary research and scientific endeavors in their respective fields of basic and applied sciences have resulted in various high impact innovations and breakthroughs. They are: Dr. Maria Andrea L. Santiago from Asian Institute of Management (AIM) for education; Dr. Erna C. Arollado from the University of the Philippines Manila for pharmaceutical sciences; Dr. Emphrime B. Metillo from Mindanao State University – Iligan Institute of Technology for biological sciences; Dr. Michael Angelo B. Promentilla from De La Salle University for engineering and industrial research; Dr.  Florencia G. Palis from the University of the Philippines Los Baños for agriculture and Forestry; Dr. Avangeline C. Amor from the University of the Philippines Diliman for chemical sciences; Dr. Priscelina P. Legasto former faculty of the University of the Philippines Diliman for Humanities; Dr. Gemma Teresa T. Narisma from the Manila Observatory for earth and space sciences; Dr. Mildred A. Padilla from the University of the Philippines Los Baños for veterinary medicine.

This year’s NRCP Member Emeritus will be conferred to Dr. Gemino H. Abad for his immense contribution to the academic studies of Humanities.

Meanwhile, Outstanding Institution Awards will also be conferred to 3 institutions in recognition of their staunch support and significant contribution to the growth and development of science, technology, and innovations in the country along with the advancement of social sciences, humanities, and arts in the country.

This year’s recipients are three academic degree-granting units of the University of the Philippines Diliman.These are: the Center for Ethnomusicology for its unparalleled excellence in Philippine and Asian indigenous music with a collection of more than 2,500 hours of recorded music from 78 language groups in the Philippines, Southeast Asia, and Africa, from the lifetime work and research of its late founder, Dr. José M. Maceda, National Artist for Music, and 1987 NRCP Achievement Awardee for the Humanities; the Department of Geodetic Engineering and the Training Center for Applied Geodesy and Photogrammetry for being the country’s leading institutions and center of excellence in geospatial education, extension services and research and have advanced the quality of its undergraduate and graduate degree programs, training courses and research projects through the acquisition of state-of-the-art equipment and streamlining its academic programs; and the Marine Science Institute for its unequaled contributions in the growth and development of research in marine biodiversity, biotechnology, oceanography and sustainable utilization of marine bio-resources in the Philippines.

Lastly, 64 technical posters of Filipino researchers will be on display to showcase science, technology, and innovations as effective and efficient tool that work for change.  Two (2) monographs published by NRCP will also be presented during the event. These are “Do Fishes Want Sex Change” authored by Dr. Michelle V. Paraso and “Fish Parasites as Heavy Metal Absorbents” by Dr. Vachel Gay V. Paller.

Since 2018 marks the 85th anniversary of NRCP, there will be an unveiling of the 85th NRCP Anniversary logo to signal the year-long activities; and the General Membership Assembly where candidates for Regular membership, and new members of the Governing Board will be elected.

DOST Secretary Fortunato T. De La Peña along with the 13 members of NRCP Governing Board led by NRCP President Christina A. Binag and NRCP Executive Director Marieta Bañez Sumagaysay will lead this red-letter day of delegates from different HEIs, SUCs, and other research institutions in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.