The National Academy of Science and Technology Philippines (NAST PHL) through its Biological Sciences Division (BSD) organized the Science and Technology (S&T) Policy Forum on Research Findings on the Effects of Climate Change on the Philippine Marine Resources on April 5, 2016 at the Hotel Jen Manila. The policy forum was conducted to (1) review and synthesize the recorded impacts of climate change on the Philippine marine resources and (2) make recommendations relating to their sustainable utilization and management.
National Scientist Mercedes B. Concepcion welcomed the participants from different government agencies, research institutions, and other organizations specializing on marine science and climate change. Academician (Acd.) Rhodora V. Azanza, chair of BSD and focal person of the forum, gave the opening remarks and the objectives of the policy forum.
The first speaker was Dr. Vincent V. Hilomen, project manager of the Marine Key Biodiversity Areas Project of the Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB), Department of Environmental and Natural Resources. His talk focused on the Philippine Fisheries and Biodiversity: the status of fisheries and biodiversity, potential effects of climate change, and the role of BMB in the protection of coastal and marine ecosystems. He pointed out that the increasing catch per unit effort (CPUE) on marine resources is due to seaweed culture. Thus, the current trend is in fact alarming considering that the commercial and municipal (fish/fishery) catches are actually declining. According to him, certain climate change impacts such as coral bleaching can shift species composition that would cause cascading changes in our biodiversity. With this, the BMB proposed a Coastal and Marine Ecosystems Rehabilitation Program to arrest the decline of ecosystems and increasethe total potential economic value of resource.
In order to propose a 6-year science and technology (S&T) human resource development strategy, the National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL) have gathered stakeholders from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), the academe, concerned public and private institutions, participants from the professional societies, industry sector, and the media for a policy forum on June 30, 2016 at Astoria Plaza Manila.
The Policy Forum on S&T Human Resource Development: Looking Back and Looking Forward aims to look at the current state of S&T personnel in the Philippines, challenges, and opportunities faced in a growing knowledge economy, the need for more research scientists and engineers for the country and propose resolutions to address current issues and concerns regarding S&T competencies, talent mobility, and job opportunities.
The participants were welcomed by Academician (Acd.) Fabian M. Dayrit, acting president of NAST PHL. He also presented about the National Science Consortium: its members, initiatives, and activities. “It takes an ecosystem to train a scientist,” he stressed as he narrates the challenges, opportunities, and areas for improvement in government support relative to the development of S&T human resource in the country.
Forum on the Challenges and Opportunities in the Implementation of the K-12 Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (Stem) Curriculum
On June 23, 2016, the National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines, through the Mathematical and Physical Sciences Division (MPSD), conducted the Forum on the Challenges and Opportunities in the Implementation of the K-12 Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Curriculum. Various stakeholders of the program, from the academe and public and private institutions, participated in the forum.
Academician William G. Padolina, member of MPSD, welcomed the participants and pointed out that "having the K-12 system in place does not exactly mean that there is no more room for improvement.” He acknowledges that “there is still work that needs to be done in addressing the challenges in implementation and in improving the system and the curriculum itself as we are already in the last phase of the transition period.”
Mr. Joseph R. Jacob, supervising education program specialist of the Bureau of Curriculum Development - Curriculum Standards Development Division, Department of Education (DepEd), discussed the current status of the K-12 STEM program. The reform in the curriculum intends to produce scientifically, environmentally, and technologically literate graduates with 21st century skills. Mr. Jacob explained that in ensuring the efficiency of the program, DepEd has conducted consultative meetings with concerned stakeholders in developing the science program curriculum and curriculum guides.