Wednesday, March 22, 2017

TEACHER CORNER | Is the state of science and technology in the PH ready for global challenges?

by Grace Baldovia Veridiano
Senior High School Teacher III, Antipolo National High School

It is said that the state of science and technology in a country is directly correlated to its economic progress. Whatever progress a nation may have is largely due to said state. Thus, for a nation to enjoy economic progress, it must ensure that the state of science and technology in the country is at a good spot.

In the Philippines, many concerns have been identified with regard to the state of our science and technology. Among these are the lack of support for science and technology initiatives, a shortage of qualified and competent science teachers, and a lack of coordination among researchers.

These concerns make it problematic for the state of our science and technology to respond to global challenges such as the blurring of international borders via globalization, and the increasing pace of the development of science and technology in the international arena.

On the other hand, this is not to say that achievements are not being made by Filipino scientists. Indeed, advancements, particularly in the life sciences, biotechnology, engineering, agriculture and aquaculture, and the metal industry, are being recognized not only here but also abroad. Researches in health and food and nutrition are also gaining mileage. Several examples would be the achievements of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS), and the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic, and Natural Resources Research Development (PCAARRD), as well as various private institutions in the Life Sciences. Also notable are the studies on the Philippines' biodiversity by botanists, zoologists, and biologists, as well as the works on bioethanol production. Likewise significant are advances in land cultivation, crop raising, mariculture and aquaculture, which have been helping put food on the tables of poor Filipinos.

In the end, the Philippines may not be among the leading nations in science and technology. However, what we have is a lot of untapped potential as a nation where there is significant interest in the field. Both the public and private sectors must, therefore, work hand in hand to support these sparks of hope in the development of science and technology, as their help is crucial if we want to contribute to the solving of global issues.

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