DOST unveils MMSU's coastal eng'g R&D center

By Daniel P. Tapaoan, Jr.


The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) unveiled the Coastal Engineering and Management Research and Development (R&D) Center (COASTER) of the Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) as one of its newest niche centers in the regions (NICER). 


In a virtual presser last October 8, DOST presented the MMSU-based research center as among its 10 centers under the Department’s health and industry, energy, and emerging technology sectors. 


Organized by the DOST’s Science for Change Program (S4CP), the virtual presser aimed to showcase the new NICERs in the country which will boost regional initiatives and efforts towards a competitive innovation ecosystem. The event’s theme was “Investing in R&D: Shaping the Philippines Innovation Landscape.”


The COASTER aims to spearhead the development of technologies and innovation to mitigate and manage coastal disasters and risks in the Philippines. 


Dr. Nathaniel Alibuyog, COASTER program leader, said the R&D center is composed of four projects: coastal erosion trends and management strategies; assessment, monitoring, and prediction of coastal flooding; development of science-based engineering approach to coastal protection; and enhancing coastal design and infrastructure intervention through the establishment of wave testing laboratory.


MMSU President Shirley C. Agrupis extended gratitude to DOST for its confidence and support to the University, and promised that MMSU will always be an active partner of the national agency in making science work for the people.


DOST Regional Director Armando Ganal committed the agency’s support to the R&D center in Ilocos region, and promised to “cooperate whatever we can for the realization of its project components.”


Other nine NICERS under health and industry, energy, and emerging technology sectors are the Center for Sustainable Polymers of Mindanao State University - Iligan Institute of Technology; Center for Advanced Batteries of Technological Institute of the Philippines; Environmental Technologies and Compliance R&D Center of Polytechnic University of the Philippines; Center for Lakes Sustainable Development of Laguna State Polytechnic University; Smart Water Infrastructure R&D Center of Isabela State University; Biomaterials for Therapeutics and Diagnostics R&D Center of Angeles University Foundation; Center for Vector of Diseases of Public Health of De La Salle University (DLSU) – Laguna; R&D Center for Medical Robotics of DLSU; and Integrated Protein R&D Center of Ateneo De Manila University. 


The COASTER is the second niche center established in MMSU. In September, the DOST launched the Garlic and other Agri-Food Condiments Research and Development (R&D) Center of the University, a NICER under the agriculture, aquatic, and natural resources (AANR) sector.


A component of S4CP, the NICER program aims to address the discrepancy in access to R&D funding among the regions. S4CP aims to accelerate STI in the country and create a massive increase in investments on S&T human resource development and R&D. (StratCom)