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Gov't allocates $30m for research

Thursday, February 08, 2018

KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) — Over the next three years, the Government will be allocating $30 million to fund high-quality research in the areas of indigenous knowledge and water.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Olivia Grange, made the announcement at the launch of the University of the West Indies (UWI) Research Days at the institution yesterday.

“The Government is of the view that the transition from our current state of economic stability to growth and prosperity must be underpinned by the evolution of a robust research and innovation ecosystem,” the minister said.

She emphasised that such an ecosystem must be further bolstered with strategic partnerships between tertiary institutions and industry.

“This is the critical role the UWI has played for the better part of its 70-year existence, and which we know it will continue to play for us in Jamaica,” she said.

Underscoring the Government's commitment to facilitating the development of research and innovation, Grange said additional funding for research purposes will be provided as the funds become available.

“As our fiscal space strengthens, we will continue to commit additional funding for high-quality research projects in the areas of indigenous knowledge and water research,” the minister said.

She said that research and development are critical to fuelling innovation, national development and economic growth, and urged for research to focus on specific issues in the society to assist in tackling social challenges and drive economic growth.

“As we seek to cement a growth doctrine in our society, the University must ensure that its research modalities continue to enlighten and mould socio-economic policies that are readily adaptable to the needs of our society,” she said.

UWI Research Days will be held from February 7 to 9 under the theme 'Powering Development through Partnerships in Research and Innovation'.

Key research areas to be explored include health, economics, climate change, alternative energy and crime.