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SDRC@33 Anniversary Program
Welcome Remarks of Dr. Dennis Trinidad, SDRC Director

Brother Narciso Erguiza, Jr., FSC, President and Chancellor, De La Salle University, administrators, distinguished guests, fellow faculty members and research fellows, friends, ladies and gentlemen, good morning. It is my pleasure to welcome all of you to the 33rd founding anniversary of the Social Development Research Center, better known in DLSU by its acronym, SDRC.

SDRC has a very long history of excellence in research. Its long-term vision is to contribute to the improvement of quality of life in the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific through social science research. True to its mission-vision, the Center has conducted action research that addressed social development issues pertaining to social health, education, indigenous people, poverty alleviation, and social impact assessments. SDRC has played and continues to play an important role in promoting action research in the University. To date, more than 201 externally-funded projects amounting to about 213 million pesos in funding have been conducted and completed by the Center. On the average, this is worth 1 million pesos per project at a constant exchange rate. Multiple publications in the form of monographs, books, journal articles, working papers, and occasional papers have also been produced from these completed studies. Aside from research, the Center has also conducted capacity building and training programs in the past.

The theme for this year’s anniversary celebration is “SDRC@33: Leading and Learning through Collaborative Research.” SDRC continues to reinvent itself to adapt to the changing times. In today’s increasingly globalized academic environment, collaboration and interdisciplinary research have become buzzwords. Advancement in information technology has made knowledge accessible to many. Networking has allowed scholars to collaborate with other scholars in the field, or to share preliminary findings on their on-going studies. Likewise, social development issues are now viewed in kaleidoscope-like multiple perspectives rather than through the lens of a single discipline. The question of why poverty persists, for instance, requires social, political, economic and even cultural explanations. For interdisciplinary studies to thrive, collaboration among researchers is crucial. SDRC, in its very limited capacity, hopes to create an enabling environment that will foster collaboration among its research fellows initially within the level of the College of Liberal Arts. We also hope to partner with other research institutions in our future activities. This is what SDRC stands for as a research institution, this is what it aspires to achieve in the coming two or three years. We shall look forward to becoming a leader in collaborative, interdisciplinary studies in the Philippines and in the Asia-Pacific region.

As De La Salle University strives to become a research university, there is a need to invest in talented people and allot resources that will strengthen research capabilities in the campus. As part of the university-wide enabling environment for developing a culture of research, I suggest that we consider hiring researchers and research associates who will devote their time to research alone. They can be affiliated with one of the research centers within the campus. Foreign universities have done this. It’s about time that we follow. Moreover, creating a culture of research in the campus would be fraught with difficulty if the necessary institutional incentives are absent. For example, why would a faculty participate in collaborative research when the university only rewards single authorship for such studies?

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the members of the SDRC staff and research fellows for their untiring support to the Center’s research endeavors. SDRC owes them its successful existence. To show our gratitude, we shall be awarding selected fellows who have brought in research projects with multi-millions worth of  funding to De La Salle University through SDRC. We will also launch in the afternoon the newest book authored by one of our senior fellows and the Occasional Paper Series as the newest SDRC research publication material. We shall also officially launch the SDRC website in the afternoon.

For the morning session, we will have three presentations. The first one is a research dissemination from our visiting research fellow from Norway, Ms. Hanne Borgersen. This will be followed by presentations from our two project directors, Dr. Roberto Javier, Jr. and Dr. Antonio Contreras. They will present preliminary findings from SDRC’s newest research projects.

Again, on behalf of the Social Development Research Center, it is my honor and pleasure to welcome you all. Have a pleasant morning!

 

 

 

 

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