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Boosting Smart Cities and Emerging Tech in the Philippines

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A major step forward in the Philippines’ technology development was recently achieved at the annual US-Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Business Council 2023 Philippine Business Mission meeting.

Smart city development, digital transformation, quantum technology, advanced weather forecasting, and Health Technology Assessment (HTA) projects were some of the conference’s key topics of interest. These subjects demonstrated the country’s dedication to adopting cutting-edge technologies and encouraging innovation across a range of industries.

The US-Asean Business Council was instrumental in forming this revolutionary conversation, representing more than 175 US businesses, many of which are multinational behemoths with a significant presence in Southeast Asia. The Business Mission, which brought together top executives from member firms, served as a reminder of the significance of strong business links between the US and the Philippines, which are essential for both economic growth and technical innovation.

Secretary Renato Solidum Jr. of the Department of Science and Technology (DoST) oversaw this cooperative endeavour. In a press release, the DoST was delighted to have the chance to collaborate on Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) projects with the business sector. Numerous advantages, such as knowledge sharing, technology advancements, and creative solutions that might greatly boost the country’s STI initiatives, are promised by this strategic alignment.

The ongoing research and development initiatives like the OneLab Network, Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Programme (Setup), and Community Empowerment through Science and Technology (CEST) are important parts of this partnership.

Through Science and Technology (S&T) interventions across five critical areas—health and nutrition, water and sanitation, basic education and literacy, livelihood/economic enterprise development, disaster risk reduction, and climate change adaptation—these projects aim to empower marginalised communities in the country while upgrading and supporting rural development.

The structured Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that the DoST and the US-Asean Business Council inked in 2019 is one notable highlight. This MoU provides evidence of the cooperative efforts to advance government-driven research, technology, and innovation projects in the commercial sector. It represents both parties’ dedication to promoting technical innovation for the good of the country.

The Philippines has started a fantastic journey that involves many different aspects of growth to become a smart nation leading the way in this change are smart cities. Urban centres that are setting the standard for innovative solutions that improve urban living are Metro Manila and other similar centres.

These solutions, which include data analytics, Internet of Things (IoT) sensors, and smart infrastructure, all help to optimise energy use, improve public services, and manage traffic better. The objective is to develop more liveable, efficient, and sustainable urban environments that meet changing population demands.

Among the emerging fields with the greatest promise to transform computing, communications, and cryptography is quantum technology. Quantum applications that can improve logistics, speed up drug discovery, and strengthen cybersecurity are being extensively investigated in the Philippines. Research and development on quantum technology must be prioritised if the country is to stay competitive in the quickly changing global IT market.

Partnerships are also important in ensuring that Filipinos have access to fundamental services in this age of digital revolution, particularly in isolated and neglected areas. Through these partnerships, the government may be able to help more people get important services like healthcare, schooling, and financial services.

Similarly, by adopting e-governance techniques and working with digital firms, digital partnerships promote increased efficiency in governance. This strategy improves public service delivery, streamlines administrative procedures, cuts bureaucracy, and eventually increases citizen satisfaction and trust in the government.


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