With the success of Ayala Technohub in UP Diliman, more information technology (IT) parks within universities and colleges will soon rise across the country to serve as viable locations for leading IT-BPO companies.
The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) said a new type of economic zone, dubbed as Knowledge, Innovation, Science and Technology (KIST) park would be up for launch soon in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology and the academe.
PEZA said it has initially tapped the Philippine Association of State Universityes and Colleges (PASUC) and the University of the Philippines to provide pilot areas – mostly idle lands – within their campuses that can be developed as model KIST parks.
With the schools’ steady supply of talents, quality of educational infrastructure and strong scientific-technological culture, PEZA hopes to add more value to the country’s higher education institutions through the KIST parks.
In a recent consultation meetin with PASUC and UP, PEZA director general Charito Plaza said she has challenged the schools’ top executives to venture into ecozone development to be able to attract scientists and venture caputalists into innovation and technology as well as to promote the establishment of more knowledge process outsourcing hubs and research and development centers.
“This strategy is feasible taking into account the country’s highliy educated and English-speaking workforce and the large pool of comptetent college/university professors and students that can provide intellectual capital to locator industries in KIST parks” said PEZA deputy director general Theo Panga.
Aside from the conventional IT-enabled activities, PEZA sad companies into technology, innovation and R&D may register with PEZA as locators in the KIST parks, where their pioneering products or services and innovative solutions may cater to both export and domestic markets.
“No doubt that the Philippines has a huge potential in attracting foreign direct investments in the knowledge-based, digital and service economy. Given the right infrastructure, the setting up of on-campus KIST parks can also significantly boost the schools’ competitiveness as they engage in knowledge-intensive activities and pursue academe-industry collaboration to advance innovation and at the same time, generate business and jobs for the country”
The agency said the academe may also partner with the industries, particularly in putting up a research institute and incubation facility where its scientific studies or technology patent can be offered to ventured capitalists for commercial development and production.
WITH REPORTS FROM: Richmond Mercurio, The Philippine Star