New SEARCA program calls for innovation, collaboration

LOS BAÑOS, Laguna, Oct 15 (PIA) --The Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) unveiled its new program called Emerging Innovation for Growth (EIG) on 14 October 2020 via the SEARCA Online Learning and Virtual Engagement (SOLVE) platform in a public event titled “Launching ATTAIN AGRi 4.0.”

SEARCA Director Dr. Glenn Gregorio said the EIG Program is powered by the SEARCA innovEIGhts Model of open collaboration with academe-industry-government partnerships.

“The Emerging Innovation for Growth is our flagship program in the SEARCA 11th Five-Year Plan that is focused on Accelerating Transformation through Agricultural Innovation or ATTAIN,” Dr. Gregorio explained.

He emphasized that “the challenging task of ushering our farmers from obsolete ways of farming that is limited to a production perspective towards an agribusiness mindset in an innovative agriculture ecology called Agriculture 4.0 requires working together with partners and organizations who share this goal.”

Keynote speakers during the launch of SEARCA innovEIGhts were big-name personalities in agribusiness incubation and agri-technology transfer. Ms. Ana Margarita ‘Ginggay’ Hontiveros-Malvar is Senior Adviser for GoNegosyo AgriPreneurship and Mr. Paco Magsaysay is CEO of Carmen’s Best Ice Cream.

“The SEARCA innovEIGhts Model calls for institutional partnerships across the Southeast Asia region and beyond to foster an open collaboration culture that harnesses the power of engaged minds to co-create innovative solutions transforming the lives of our farmers and farming families,” said SEARCA Emerging Innovation for Growth Program lead Dr. Rico C. Ancog.

Dr. Ancog revealed that the SEARCA innovEIGhts model consists of six component tools that partners can draw upon for designing initiatives and scaling them up and out to “ATTAIN AGRi 4.0.”

“INDEX” is the research and information arm to measure and ensure the impact of innovation initiatives on the wellbeing of farming families.

“SERVES” provides hands-on technical advisory for farming community livelihood projects and practical innovative solutions to persistent farming challenges.

“iDEATES” focuses on agri-innovation competitions engaging the youth, children, students, and brilliant minds to modernize agriculture and build local rural innovation ecosystems.

“BLOCKS” is an open shared service hub promoting locally adaptable agri-technologies, prototypes and practices for small farmers and rural communities.

“A4LIFE” builds local and community-based innovation ecosystem and inclusive agribusiness value chains to produce a generation of green startups and agripreneurs.

“SPACE” is a powerful innovation and open collaboration regional gateway for agri-incubation and technology transfer information, programs, resources, and networks in the world. (PIA-4A/SEARCA)

Source: Philippines Information Agency (

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