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Rudy Fernandez (The Philippine Star) - April 19, 2018 - 12:00am

LOS BAÑOS, Laguna , Philippines — A Department of Science and Technology (DOST) research council based here has begun evaluating the entries in its 2018 science and technology/research and development journalism award.

A board of judges has been created to assess the entries submitted for the 2018 Ulat SIPAG Award sponsored by the DOST-Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic, and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD).

The results of the evaluation of the internal screening committee (both print and broadcast) will be turned over to the board of judges this month, said PCAARRD Applied Communication Division director Marita Carlos.

The contest winners will receive cash prizes and plaques of recognition during PCAARRD’s 2018 anniversary celebration on June 22.

PCAARRD, originally named Philippine Council for Agricultural Research (PCAR), was established in 1972 as a sectoral council of DOST with the mandate to coordinate, evaluate, and monitor all government-funded R&D programs, projects, and activities in agriculture, aquatic, and natural resources research in the country.            

SIPAG stands for Strategic Industry (S&T) Plan for Agriculture-Aquatic Growth. Formerly named Professional Media Award, “it recognizes the important role and support of media professionals as a vital link between the S&T sector and the people,” acting executive director Reynaldo Ebora said.

It is in line with the government S&T agenda as enunciated by President Duterte thus: “The science initiative must be distributed to the regions, especially where food production must be improved, where industry needs to grow, and where innovations need to be developed.”

Science Secretary Fortunato dela Peña also emphasized, “we therefore support PCAARRD’s Ulat SIPAG Award for the different commodities in crops, livestock, inland aquatic resources, marine research, as well as the other environmental R&D initiatives.”

Ebora also acknowledged print and broadcast journalists in popularizing science and technology in relation to PCAARRD’s concerns, primarily its industry strategic programs.         

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