By Halyn Lunel Gamboa

Last 7 April 2022, DOST-CALABARZON, through the Human Resources Committee of the Southern Tagalog Consortium for Industry and Energy Research and Development (STCIERD), hosted a virtual orientation on the Exchange of Probes, Learnings, and Outputs of Researchers (EXPLORE), from 9AM to 12NN via Zoom platform. EXPLORE is a database that aims to be the central repository of research programs or projects of government agencies and academic institutions in the region.

With the goal of sharing R&D information between and among researchers and organizations, EXPLORE hopes to encourage more R&D projects, publications, generate more intellectual properties, and further strengthen linkages and collaborations in the research community.

Dr. Tirso A. Ronquillo, Chair of STCIERD, gave the Opening Remarks and encouraged the consortium to enrich the said repository as part of its key performance indicator.

“The end goal, really, is to see each other⁠—that to me is the immediate goal of EXPLORE⁠—to know what each other is doing, to know what each other have found recently so we can incorporate and align them [studies] or use them as a source of information for future researches,” Dr. Ronquillo said.

He continued, “After this webinar, I hope that all of us who are attending will further explore this with other researchers⁠—our students and faculty, even.”

Engr. Francisco R. Barquilla III, Assistant Regional Director for Technical Operations, led the discussion and walked the member agencies through EXPLORE’s objectives, key features, status, users and contributing agencies in the region. He said that while the EXPLORE was developed by DOST-CALABARZON, the said information system is owned by the Regional Research and Innovation Committee (RRIC) of the Regional Development Council (RDC) - CALABARZON.

Urging his fellow agencies to share their research projects, Engr. Barquilla mentioned the importance of the EXPLORE in exhibiting the current Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) environment of CALABARZON.

“If that will be the part of the report of RIIC sa RDC, napakaganda niyang data,” Engr. Barquilla remarked, “Kung mas maraming research at mas maraming project na nainput dito [EXPLORE], it means very healthy and very active ang ating STI dito sa CALABARZON.”

In CALABARZON, there are currently 66 users and 30 agencies and institutions enrolled in the system. A total of 508 R&D projects are also stored. Furthermore, EXPLORE had also been adopted by DOST-VIII’s Regional Research, Development and Innovation Committee.

After the lecture, an open forum was conducted to address the participants’ concerns regarding the system. Dr. Lorcelie Taclan, STCIERD Director, delivered the closing remarks.

Dr. Taclan thanked the participants and said, “I believe our activity today gave us the opportunity to look into our research activities most especially those already uploaded in the EXPLORE. This is one of the ways na pwede nating ipakita [ang researches natin] as Filipinos, for this could also be browsed by other collaborators and other partners in the international community of research.”