02 March 2018 – The UP Diliman Institute of Biology (IB) and Electrical and Electronics Engineering Institute (EEEI), and UP Los Baños Institute of Biology team up to introduce the country’s first Smart Farm that will be built at the DOST-ASTI Complex, Quezon City.

The Nursery of Indigenous and Endemic Plants will house the facility for the Smart Plant Production in Controlled Environments (SPICE), a 128M program funded by the Innovation Council, DOST-PCIEERD, which aims to promote urban farming and high-tech plant conservation.

This program aims to lead the research and development (R&D) for the design of a stand-alone urban farm system and establish protocols for micropropagation, cryopreservation, and nursery management of rare, endangered, and economically valuable native plant species.

“The core of this project is not only the development of new technology, but, on a macro perspective, to ensure that we can protect our country’s rich biodiversity,” DOST Undersecretary for R&D Dr. Rowena Cristina Guevara mentioned in her message.

Modern farming methods like vertical farming, micropropagation, cryopreservation, and hydroponics will be practiced to grow native plants in an environment wherein the climate, the lighting, and the irrigation system can be monitored, controlled, and changed real-time through the use of electronics, sensors, and automation.

“My idea of internationalization is exporting our own ideas…’yung scientists ng ibang bansa ang pupunta dito para aralin ang endemic trees natin. SPICE is an innovation project,” remarked Dr. Teodoro Herbosa, UP Executive Vice President.

National Scientist and UP Professor Emeritus, Dr. Edgardo Gomez shared his experiences in Biology and commended the team for initiating the project, saying that “This (SPICE) will be a world-class institute.”

Aside from the technical features of the project, the facility is envisioned to include a living laboratory where visitors can see the various technologies employed and store where they can buy fresh vegetables grown on-site.

(From Left) DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña, QBO Director Katrina Chan, DTI Assistant Secretary Rafaelita “Fita” Aldaba, JP Morgan Executive Director Patricia Javier-Gutrierrez, Ideaspace Executive Director Diane Eustaquio, and President QBO Phillipines & Ideaspace Foundation Inc. Rene Meily.

Interested in creating or joining a startup but you don’t know how to start?

Good news: the QBO Innovation Hub introduced the latest stage in its effort to “lead Filipino startups in changing the world”—the QBO App, now available for download and it’s free!

The mobile app offers a virtual hub for all startup enthusiasts where they can easily connect with a broader range of entrepreneurs, investors, partners, and other potential resource persons regardless of geographical location. It is also an avenue for users to engage in startup-related discussions as well as stay updated with QBO’s events and services.

Katrina Chan, QBO Director, presented the key features of QBO App which are: Qnnect, Qllaborate, and Qntribute. Users can easily Qnnect with startups, mentors, and inventors to create meaningful partnerships, find new businesses and investments, or stay on top of the latest news.

Its Qllaborate feature allows users to discover startup-related events across the country, participate in groups to seek advice, discuss trendy topics, and communicate with special guests and speakers. Important resources like government forms, speaker presentations, and other documents can be downloaded through Qllaborate.

Lastly, the mobile app encourages the users to become active members of the startup ecosystem through Qntribute—sharing their news, pushing their own products, and posting photos, links, videos and other startup-related content on a social media-like timeline, as well as give feedback to QBO’s programs and services.

“We are totally taking a step towards the right direction in making it convenient for our startups to connect,” NAME, JP Morgan Managing Director, commended the app and added, “This provides open access to all levels of society, which is integral in inclusive growth of the country.”

Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Fortunato de la Peña reminded, “we have to instill in them the spirit of competition. I encourage you (startups) to be persistent.”

What is QBO Innovation Hub?

QBO Innovation Hub is a groundbreaking partnership between public and private sector that aims to develop, grow, and scale up a competitive startup ecosystem in the Philippines. The hub encourages Qllaboration between startups, develop Qmmunity (over 100 programs designed for developing startups), and provide Inqbation for startups. In 2017, they were recognized as one of the three ‘Best Accelerator Programme’ at the Rice Bowl Startup Awards.

QBO Innovation Hub is a collaboration among DOST, Department of Trade and Industry, JP Morgan, and Ideaspace.

For more information about QBO, visit

DOST’s Technology Business Incubation (TBI) Program

The Innovation Council, DOST-PCIEERD, supports the QBO Innovation Hub under the TBI Program. This program aims to promote innovation and technopreneurship for the country’s socio-economic development in a knowledge-based world economy providing a range of resources, services and facilities needed during the development stage. The goal of TBI is to produce firms that will leave the incubation program financially viable and able to sustain operation and compete in the market.

More information on the TBI Program at

19 FEBRUARY 2018— DOST-PCIEERD partners with the De La Salle University, RTI International, and USAID STRIDE program to deliver the Filipinnovation Entrepreneurship Corps (FEC) lean startup training program which kicked off at the De La Salle University.

FEC is an experiential training program for researchers to rapidly define the commercial and societal value of their research. 10 DOST-funded principal investigators or RDI project leads are involved in the program.

Based on the successful US National Science Foundation I-Corps™ program, researchers are placed in teams with an entrepreneurial lead, which could be a graduate student, along with an experienced industry mentor and a technology transfer officer to create a business model canvas and conduct numerous customer interviews in the following weeks to continuously refine their innovative products and ideas. It is intended that after the 4-week program, these teams will be better able to attract additional funding and strategic partners to fast track their adoption and impact to the Filipino consumer.

FEC is supported by the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD) and is represented by Russell M. Pili, the Chief of the Research Information and Technology Transfer Division (RITTD). This first batch of FEC trainees have teams representing DOST’s Industrial Technology Development Institute (ITDI), Metals Industry Research and Development Center (MIRDC), Philippine Textile Research Institute (PTRI), Food and Nutrition Research Institute, (FNRI); and DOST-funded research at UP Diliman, UP Los Baños, and De La Salle University.

Principal Instructors of the FEC program are both Nationally Certified Instructors for the National Science Foundation’s I-Corps™. Dr. Jim Chung is the Associate Vice President for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the George Washington University; while Robert Storey is an Executive in Residence at Johns Hopkins University and Principal of the MVR Company that focuses on the assessment and creation of new ventures. Moreover, providing direct teaching support to participants is Adam Klich, an Innovation Advisor with RTI International and a former startup founder.

In the photo are the 10 teams that make up the Filippinnovation Entreprenuership Corps together with representatives from DOST-PCIEERD, DLSU, RTI International, and USAID STRIDE.

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) will be funding the development of a hybrid trimaran cargo vessel that can harness energy from ocean waves.

This P76-million project is the brainchild of shipyard owner Engr. Jonathan Salvador. The project will be implemented by the Aklan State University (ASU), with the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and Metallica Shipyard as its partners. MARINA, as a project partner, will ensure that the vessel will be compliant with international safety and emission standards. Having 7 years of experience in shipbuilding, Metallica Shipyard will provide the hybrid craft’s design and specifications.

The construction of the hybrid craft will improve our country’s maritime industry as it is projected to be a modern design, environment-friendly, safe and unsinkable.

The cargo vessel is envisioned to carry 100 passengers, 4 vans, and 15 motorcycles. Steel will be used to build the vessel to ensure higher structure efficiency and better wave resistance.

Wave energy double action hydraulic pumps will be integrated in the outriggers of the hybrid craft. The mechanical movements in the pumps will be converted to electrical energy that can be used to provide additional power to the vessel. The more waves that the vessel encounters, more power will be produced. This technology is expected to improve the vessel’s energy efficiency, making it not only cost-efficient, but also environment-friendly.

The vessel will utilize multi-engine technology that prevents it from encountering total engine failures while at sea, minimizing maritime accidents. It will also be constructed with a specifically engineered design to address the possibility of capsizing, making it practically unsinkable and able to withstand harsh environments at sea.

The construction will start this year and will be monitored by the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD). By 2020, the Philippines will get a glimpse of the finished hybrid trimaran fast craft passenger cargo vessel that harnesses energy from ocean waves.

Call for Proposal 2018