Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Varied innovations bared in PCARRD techno writeshop

By Niño Manaog and Cora Navarra
Regional Applied Communications Group

Quality pellets for ordinary farm folk, a bioreactor using algae freely available in nature and noodles made from fish bones and squash were only some of the technology ideas disclosed during the Intellectual Property Management Training cum Writeshop on Technology Disclosure and Claim Drafting held Oct. 14–16, 2009 in Plazoleta Gay at Hotel del Rio in Iloilo City

The second leg to be held in the country following the Mindanao batch, the Visayas-wide writeshop sponsored by the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCARRD) featured a wide array of significant lectures for would-be innovators and inventors in the Visayas Island.

The team featured lectures by two science research specialists (SRS) from PCARRD, Mr. Ricardo Argana and Mr. Noel Catibog. Argana discussed intellectual property management and the innovation process while Catibog covered prior art search and disclosure of tangible and technical properties.

Ms. Rosa M. Fernandez, assistant head for Field Operations Unit of the Intellectual Property Philippines lectured on claim drafting. According to lead mentor Fernandez, their group looks forward to witnessing unique and improved technologies that are beneficial to society.
In three days, the participants underwent a full process of disclosure workshop starting with evaluation of submitted disclosures by the panel of mentors and claim drafting. Afterwards, the panel of mentors led by Fernandez evaluated the claims using IPO sample. In the final day, participants presented their completed disclosures and patent claims.

Among others, Prof. Naomi G. Petronio, assistant professor at the Visayas State University in Tolosa, Leyte presented a claim on noodles made from fish bones and squash. While their process claimed was deemed unoriginal by the panel, co-author Petronio’s innovation rests on the promotion of Vitamin A as precursor to calcium absorption. In an interview with WESVARRDEC’s Regional Applied Communications Group (RACG), Petronio said their innovation is largely hinged on social responsibility. Their noodles research benefits DepEd’s feeding program for children, DOLE’s livelihood mechanism for women as supported by the local government unit. While it currently generates income for VSU’s Tolosa campus, Petronio confides in this legacy they wish to leave in the said school.

Meanwhile, Dr. Danilo B. Largo, research director of University of San Carlos in Cebu shared a research paper on developing a bioreactor using algae. Largo claimed that the technology virtually takes advantage of Nature. According to Largo, they need to develop the bioreactor first before any project can commence.

Engr. Aries Roda D. Romallosa, RMIS representative of Central Philippine University, a partner member agency of WESVARRDEC was optimistic in her village-level feed production because it will allow ordinary farmers to produce quality pellets as feeds for their poultry and livestock. Romallosa claimed that this technology will make ordinary farming less dependent on commercial pellets.

In all, the writeshop solicited sizable participation from the three regions—Western Visayas, Eastern Visayas and Central Visayas. The participants signed a Manifestation of Commitment and Support for a Progressive Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources (AFNR) Sectors through Meaningful Intellectual Creations. They also signed a confidentiality agreement to protect and safeguard the technologies presented in the same.

The three-day exposure to intellectual property (IP) also allowed participants to test their knowledge on IP through the pre- and post-diagnostic tests given by Ms. Yolanda Tanyag of PCARRD.

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