Press Release
December 20, 2011


The onslaught of Typhoon Sendong underscores the urgency of the establishment of a Disaster Science and Management innovation cluster in the country, said Senator Edgardo J. Angara, chair of the Congressional Commission on Science, Technology and Engineering (COMSTE).

Angara, also the Chair of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts and Culture, pushed for funding in the 2012 national budget for the establishment of innovation clusters--a consortium of government, academe and industry focused on research and development that will address five key areas or clusters.

"As we have witnessed, there is a critical need especially for the Disaster Science and Management Cluster to provide accurate science forecasting and modeling, as well as train local governments and school administrators on disaster mitigation," said Angara. "This cluster will ensure that knowledge and information generated by the academe through research will be translated to useable technology and swiftly cascaded to the grassroots through the help of industry leaders and the government."

The main thrust of the Disaster Science and Management Cluster is disaster risk reduction and integrated risk governance, not just emergency response.

"While emergency response is crucial in any event, it does not minimize our vulnerabilities," explained Angara. "We will be arming ourselves in the long-term if we focus on reducing disaster risks in the country."

The other innovation clusters to be funded in the 2012 budget are Algae Research & Commercialization, Cloud Computing and Software as a Service (SaaS), Smart Agriculture and Precision Farming, and Responsible Mining Technologies.

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