Need based research projects can open up international funding opportunities: Dr Ashraf

Ahsan Jamil

THE PROJECT formulation implies to activities aimed at defining specific objectives that have defined timeframe within a defined budget. Pakistan is bestowed with eminent scientists, scholars, researchers and brains that can convolute for not only pinpointing the challenges horrifying the socio-economic dynamics of the country but also in surfacing pragmatic and viable solutions through multidisciplinary approach. This was expressed by the speakers of Project Formulation workshop organized by Pakistan Science Foundation (PSF) at University of Poonch from September 2-3, 2015.

Chairman PSF, Dr Muhammad Ashraf vehemently stressed on the need of problem solving research while speaking on the occasion he said, “The fund winning proposals can only be created through joint integrated efforts of scientists from multiple fields through intensive RandD and project formulation endeavors. In the current scenario, Pakistani researchers dont manage to come up to the potential and reach at the desired level from where they can attract foreign donor agencies and SandT organizations. This situation can be improved by aggravating scientific ecosystem in the country and emphasizing on a solution based research approach”.

The science maestros present on the occasion were of the view that the senior scientists through effective communication with academia under the umbrella of PSF can mentor and monitor the research activities and creation of grant winnable proposals. This will not only attract foreign stakeholders towards Pakistan but also develop and mature the scientific ambience in Pakistan. The challenges like climate change, water security, and food security can be addressed through project formulation and engaging scientists from industry and the academia to offer most to the country by productive efforts. PSF can lead the process by channelizing these activities.

Vice Chancellor, University of Poonch, Prof Dr Muhammad Kaleem Abbasi greeted PSF for organizing such an important workshop at the University of Poonch, Rawalakot, Azad Jammu and Kashmir. He suggested the faculty of the university to communicate more effectively with the PSF team and resource person for preparing fund winning research proposals.

Prof Dr Shafiq-ur-Rehman, Dean, Kohat University of Science and Technology strongly supported the idea of setting the directional offset of scientists and researchers towards problem solving research projects and reaching out to the national and international donor agencies. He said, “It is the apt time for the scientists and researchers to work proactively and explore national and international funding opportunities. The scientists, faculty of the university have to dig out new avenues for projects funding and concentrate on the problem solving research”.

It is high time to revisit the science policies as Pakistan`s number of researches and publications are increasing each year but the impact factor is still not up to the mark and the challenges on the ground are still growing at fast pace shrouding the country`s economy with dark shadows of uncertainty.

The academia from public and private sector needs to vitalize the scientific advancement through several initiatives which push young researchers towards the problem solving research instead of the redundant research which still infest in various national and international journals but account for none of the existing problems of the country.

Pakistan Science Foundation (PSF) is the phoenix of SandT promotion and popularization in the country that is making its efforts for raising project formulation awareness and triggering scientists and researchers towards problem solving research.

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