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Continue UPLB’s culture of research amidst pandemic, VC for R&E says at research forum

During her first public speaking engagement as the new Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension, Dr. Merdelyn C. Lit said to continue UPLB's culture of research even during pandemic.

Vice Chancellor Lit delivered the inspirational message at the 7th College of Economic and Management Economic (CEM) Research Forum with the theme "Economic Resilience in Times of Crisis" held on 23 November 2020 via Zoom.

"It was quite difficult during the pandemic when everything had to stop but realities sunk in and economy had to come in...As a research university, it is important to ask what we can do," VC Lit said.

To create lasting and sustainable solutions to the complex but interconnected issues that the pandemic revealed, she said to gather evidence from the ground, involve communities, harness collaborations, and have a supportive administration.

"Even during pandemic, we must not stop our culture of research. Instead, we must be encouraged and continue to be inspired," VC Lit said.

The forum is CEM's annual research colloquium where REPS and Faculty share research findings for possible collaborations and for improving CEM’s research programs.

This year, CEM had four paper presentations from the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Department of Agribusiness Management and Entrepreneurship, Department of Economics, and the Institute of Cooperatives and Bio-Enterprise Development.

The four papers explored the country's Balik Probinsya and the real estate development; the innovative ambidexterity of Filipino agripreneurs; the cooperatives' resilience amidst the pandemic and natural disasters; and the implications of COVID-19 quarantine restrictions to food and nutrition security.

UPLB Chancellor Jose Camacho, Jr. also graced the forum as the keynote speaker. The forum's theme resonated with his vision of "future-proofing" UPLB.

"As an economist, I urge all of you to apply and propagate future-proofing mindset so that in time, resilience can mean not just weathering the storm, to lower the cost of coping, of mitigation and adaptation but being prepared for its coming. And then rising up stronger and better in its aftermath," Chancellor Camacho said.