As Filipinos face rising food prices and reports of crop shortages and smuggling, the Department of Science and Technology-National Research Council of the Philippines (DOST-NRCP) unveiled its efforts to ensure food and nutrition security for every Filipino.
Dr. Leslie Michelle Dalmacho, president of the DOST-NRCP, in a statement, underscored that researchers are exploring the country’s rich biodiversity to “improve crops through the latest technology and enhance the farm-to-market process,” that aims to boost food production and availability to lead to more stable prices and access for consumers.
“We (DOST-NRCP) have a project on human security, which is particularly relevant now, as human security encompasses not just defense but also taking care of our health and the environment which the recent pandemic highlights the importance of human security,” Dalmacho said.
She added that part of the DOST-NRCP initiatives is also focusing on environmental research, ensuring clean water access and sustainability.
“Our issue-based basic research covers water, food, health, and energy,” Dalmacho added.
To achieve this, the council solicits research proposals from its network of over 6,000 members across the country.
With the primary objective of gathering relevant evidence in these fields, the DOST-NRCP aims to provide valuable inputs that can aid in policy making decisions by local government units (LGU), other government sectors, and the private sector.
This initiative, known as the National Integrated Basic Research Agenda (NIBRA), where they conduct research on issues identified by both lawmakers and the agency itself that ensures their research is relevant and addresses real-world problems.
Dalmacho further stated that NIBRA will also guide the development of policies aimed at protecting the environment and preserving biodiversity from 2023 to 2028.
“These policy research projects fall under two categories: demand-driven research, where issues are identified by lawmakers from the lower house or the Senate, and council-directed research projects, where the governing board of the DOST-NRCP identifies issues,” Dalmacho said.
Calls for proposals
Given this, the department calls interested participants to the 2024 DOST Call for Conference, which is a four-part campaign series of the Annual Call for Conference.
According to the announcement of the DOST-NRCP on their official Facebook page, the Mindanao leg in Cagayan de Oro City will be on Jan. 18, the Visayas leg in Cebu City on Feb. 8, and the South and National Capital Region leg in Metro Manila on Feb. 15.