Press Release
July 23, 2011


Senator Edgardo J. Angara urged the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) to spearhead the creation of more technology business incubators in the campuses of the country's technology-oriented universities.

Angara, chair of the Senate Committee on Science and Technology, made the call in a speech during yesterday's 2nd anniversary celebration of the DOST-PEZA Open Technology Business Incubator in UP Diliman.

"As we know, state universities and colleges have vast tracks of idle land. We can capitalize on that by leasing the land and generating capital from it which we can use to build more incubation centers. That's how Korea started. That's how China fuels its development. Let's not reinvent the wheel. Let us follow their lead," said Angara said.

Technology business incubators are Private-Public Partnerships (PPPs) that promote the concept of growth through technological innovation and application. These support economic development strategies for small business development and encourage growth within local economies.

Studies show that incubated businesses survive 70 percent to 90 percent of the time compared to their commercial counterparts. Today, there are at least 400 technology incubators in Korea, and around 700 in China.

The DOST-PEZA Open TBI will house and develop fledgling companies dealing in software, content, and hardware development, particularly those businesses incorporating open technologies.

This TBI is the fourth located within UP Diliman aside from the TBI's n the South S&T Park, the North S&T Park (where the UP-AyalaLand Technohub is located), and the National Engineering Center.

"This is the age of innovation. Without innovation, no country will ever progress. The reason that we're not progressing as fast and in the magnitude that other countries around us are doing is because we lack innovation. We are slow in innovation, and even slower in patenting our discoveries," noted Angara.

Data from the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) shows that between 2005 - 2007, only 67 local patents were granted out of a total 4,682. In these three years, only three patents were awarded to Filipino research and development institutes (RDI), while no patents were awarded to any university.

"What's the use of a wonderful discovery if it's just lying on the shelf, if you're not able to use it for practical purposes?" asked Angara.

Angara, chair of the Congressional Commission on Science & Technology and Engineering (COMSTE), added that the reason for the country's inadequate technological innovation is a lack of capacity in the sciences. He pointed out that that investment in research and development amounts to only 0.12 percent of GDP, where international benchmarks recommend at least 3 percent of GDP.

The veteran lawmaker, a long-time advocate of S&T education, also took note of the gains made through the Engineering Research and Development for Technology (ERDT), a consortium which COMSTE supports.

"The eight top engineering universities in this country were put together as a consortium so that we can build the critical mass of science-based, technology-oriented leaders of our country. And I think we're on track. In fact, we're producing more than our targets," said Angara.

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