The Philippine Council for Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCARRD) Deputy Executive Director for Research and Development (R&D) Danilo C. Cardenas, and Socio-Economics Research Division (SERD) Director Albert P. Aquino were conferred the 2010 University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) College of Agriculture Alumni Association Award and College of Economics and Management Alumni Association Award, respectively, during the recently concluded 92nd UPLB Loyalty Day celebration.
Cardenas was the distinguished alumnus in R&D management, while Aquino was conferred the award in government service during awarding ceremonies held on October 9 at UPLB’s Copeland Gymnasium.
A graduate of Bachelor of Science in Agriculture major in Agricultural Economics in 1975, Cardenas rose from the ranks and started as a research assistant at the PCARRD Crops Research Division. Eventually, he became director of the Technology Outreach Promotions Division in 1997 then SERD in 2001.
In 2005, he was appointed Deputy Executive Director for R&D.
His 35 years of service in PCARRD has been a productive journey. He introduced innovative schemes to enhance S&T management. Through a mix of initiatives that he introduced aimed to improve R&D governance, researchers and research managers recognized that they are integral part of the S&T system. Among these initiatives are the provision of policy environment conducive to research and continuous capacity building and mentoring of researchers from the National Agriculture Resources Research and Development Network (NARRDN) member agencies.
In upholding PCARRD’s role as the apex organization of the national agricultural research system, Cardenas spearheaded the crafting of DOST-PCARRD’s medium-term S&T plan, otherwise known as the Integrated S&T Agenda for Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources (AFNR) for 2006─2010 and 2011─2016, focusing on strategic concerns and strengthening of public-private partnership in S&T given the limited public funds for S&T.
Meanwhile, in order to roll out the technologies generated by the NARRDN, Dr. Cardenas initiated the establishment of S&T-Based Farms in the regional R&D consortia.
Another PCARRD’s pride, Aquino, who took his undergraduate and master’s degrees in UPLB, is also a homegrown staff of the Council. He started as a research assistant at SERD and ascended to his current post as SERD director. He was instrumental in strengthening PCARRD’s key concerns: S&T policy analysis and advocacy and strategic assessment.
Apart from his past initiatives that led to the formulation of policies affecting S&T governance through the PCARRD Policy Advocacy Group, which he also heads, he leads the formulation and oversight of the implementation of a P200-million program, “Enhancing the demand for AFNR graduates through science and technology” that aims to address the decreasing supply and demand for AFNR graduates.
Moreover, he figured prominently in providing leadership to the Department of Science and Technology Technical Working Committee on Technology Transfer, which was instrumental in the passage of the Philippine Technology Transfer Act of 2009. The landmark law provides for the efficient transfer of technologies, specifically those funded by public funds. (Maki Deriquito and Edge Genciagan, S&T Media Service)