DOST-ASTI forges partnership with DA, NAMRIA

22 Jul 2019 5:14 PM

Pasay City, Ph – The DOST-Advanced Science and Technology Institute (DOST-ASTI) marks another momentous milestone as the agency recently signed separate Memoranda of Agreement on Research Collaboration between two agencies, namely the Department of Agriculture (DA) and National Mapping and Resource Information Authority (NAMRIA).  

The ceremonial signing signifies the start of formal agreement of the agencies to pursue, establish, and sustain collaborative research on mapping initiatives aligned with the respective mandates of DOST-ASTI, DA, and NAMRIA. 

As laid down in the MOA, the collaborations revolve around the agencies’ access to DOST-ASTI's computing facilities (COARE), remote sensing and GIS expertise (DATOS Project), and earth observation satellite imageries (PEDRO Center). In exchange, DOST-ASTI will also have access to the datasets of DA and NAMRIA, which are relevant input data that can enhance the research and artificial intelligence-based RS/GIS applications that the former is developing. 

From L-R: Engr. Roel Dela Cruz, Senior Science Reserach Specialist; Engr. Peter Banzon, RDD Division Chief; Dr. Joel Joseph Marciano, Jr., Acting Director, DOST-ASTI; Undersecretary for Operations Engr. Ariel Cayanan; Chief of the Field Programs Operational Planning Division; Dr. Tamara Palis- Duran, Assistant FAO Representative

Nature of Agreement with Department of Agriculture 

The Field Programs Operational Planning Division of the Department (FPOPD) of Agriculture is currently implementing initiatives with the support of Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO-UN) on climate change adaptation- disaster risk reduction (CCA-DRR) and management in the agriculture sector. Given their ground validation and field expertise, the project executes protocols that employ remote sensing data and geospatial analysis, and this is where the DATOS Project comes in.  

In essence, the agreement stipulates that both parties shall exchange and share knowledge and capabilities on research in nationwide rice and corn mapping. 

DA Undersecretary for Operations Eng. Ariel Cayanan personally graced the event along with Engr. Christopher Morales, Chief of the Field Programs Operational Planning Division; Dr. Tamara Palis- Duran, Assistant FAO Representative; and other support staff of both DA and FAO.  

From L-R: Engr. Peter Antonio Banzon, Chief Research Science Specialist, DOST-ASTI; Dr. Joel Joseph Marciano, Jr., DOST-ASTI Acting Director; Dr. Rijaldia Santos, Director, NAMRIA; Engr. Raul Magabo, Senior Science Research Specialist, NAMRIA

Nature of Agreement with NAMRIA 

The National Mapping and Resource Information Authority is a government agency mandated to provide the public with mapmaking services and to act as the central mapping agency, depository, and distribution facility for natural resources data in the form of maps, charts, texts, and statistics. For the longest time, NAMRIA has utilized satellite imageries as its main data source for topographic base mapping, environmental and natural resources mapping, nationwide land cover, among other initiatives. 

Recognizing that NAMRIA holds the expertise in nationwide mapping activities, DOST-ASTI presented the recent land cover classification output using advanced GIS and computing technologies of the agency; and upon meaningful discussions and careful exchange of ideas, both parties agreed to work together in enhancing the existing methodologies of NAMRIA using artificial intelligence for nationwide land cover classification.

NAMRIA Director Dr. Rijaldia Santos along with other administrative staff came to witness the ceremonial signing of the MOA.  

These collaborations are part of DOST-ASTI's aim of providing support to other government agencies by enhancing their operational capabilities through advanced science and technology. The DOST-ASTI continues to dedicate itself to delivering technology solutions in support of a productive and resilient Filipino society. 

The MOA signing activity was held during the DOST-ASTI Industry 4.0 Technology I/O - Opportunities and Initiatives Forum last 19 July 2019 at the World Trade Center Metro Manila in Pasay City. The event was also concurrent with the National Science and Technology Week (NSTW) of the Department of Science and Technology.