Before the UP College of Agriculture became the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB), the university was already performing a trilogy of functions: instruction, research and extension. As the highest academic body in UPLB, the University Council formulates instruction policies. Until 1984, there was no parallel body for consultation and policy-making in research and extension.
UPLB's organization on research and extension became formal with the creation of the University Research and Extension Council (UREC) in 1984, and became strengthened with the fusion of the Offices of the Directors for research and extension into the current Office of the Vice-Chancellor for Research and Extension (OVCRE).
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The UREC was created through Executive Order No. 5 series of 1984 to provide direction for research at UPLB and to coordinate the university’s research programs and activities. The UREC operates at the university level as a policy-making body and as an advisory to the UPLB Chancellor. Specifically, the UREC:
- Determines or recommends whenever appropriate, policies, standards, and rules relating to the planning, implementation, and evaluation of university and extension programs;
- Periodically reviews university research and extension thrusts/ directions;
- Reviews and recommends policies concerning research and extension personnel;
- Serves as channel for communication among the different units of the university on major developments in research and extension;
- Serves as a forum for discussion of issues; and
- Advises the university administration on matters requiring decisions or action.
Automatic UREC members are the following:
- Personnel with academic designation of University Researcher I (SG 16) or higher and University Extension Specialist I or higher (equivalent to Instructor IV or higher); and
- Faculty members with rank of at least Assistant Professor I serving as leaders of research and extension programs officially approved by UPLB.
By virtue of their administrative positions, the following are ex-officio members:
- The UPLB Chancellor as ex-officio chair;
- The Vice-Chancellor for Research and Extension as UREC secretary;
- The vice-chancellors for instruction, planning and development, administration, and community affairs;
- Deans of academic units;
- Heads of research and extension units; and
- College/ unit research and/ or extension coordinators.
STANDING AND AD-HOC COMMITTEES
The following are the different standing and ad-hoc committees of the UREC and their functions:
UREC Executive Committee
With the Chancellor as Chair, the committee is composed of all deans, vice-chancellors, chairs of standing committees, and seven (7) members elected at-large who shall serve a term of two (2) years without reelection. It convenes to decide urgent matters for the council when it is impractical to wait for a meeting of the entire council. Such decisions shall be reported to the council at its next meeting. It reviews the items previously acted upon by other UREC committees and determines the agenda of UREC meetings.
Committee on Research Direction and Utilization
Reviews policy proposals concerning identification of research thrusts and priorities; piloting and demonstration of university-developed technologies; publications; information systems; and training and other extension activities.
Committee on Research and Extension Administration
Reviews and recommends proposals for consideration of the council on matters pertaining to the institution and improvement of fiscal and business procedures; establishment, support, and maintenance of laboratories and other facilities; and the evaluation and monitoring of activities and other administrative matters.
Committee on Personnel Welfare
Reviews items addressed to the UREC, particularly on matters relating to personnel welfare and discipline such as compensation, workload, fringe benefits, working conditions, training and scholarships.
As it deems appropriate, the UREC, by majority vote, may form other standing committees. The UREC chair may form ad-hoc to study important issues not covered by any of the standing committees.
The OVCRE is currently mandated as the UPLB unit in charge with the university’s research and extension programs. Created in October 23, 1997 during the Board of Regents’ (BOR) 1113th meeting, the OVCRE is tasked to:
- Assist the chancellor in coordinating the R and E programs of the university;
- Oversee the development and implementation of R and E programs of the university;
- Serve as secretary of the UREC;
- Initiate innovative techniques for efficient planning, implementation, performance evaluation, and reporting of R and E activities in the university;
- Effect increased output of technical and popular publications and implement an extensive and efficient distribution system;
- Coordinate staff development of personnel in research, extension and professional staff categories; and
- Assist in resource generation and in the establishment of inter-institutional linkages in R and E.
The office supervises some of the most important RDE centers in the university. The OVCRE has an administrative control and supervision over these units:
National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (BIOTECH)
The National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (BIOTECH), formerly known as the National Institutes of Biotechnology and Applied Microbiology, was established on December 20, 1979 by the UP Board of Regents as a research and development institution based at UPLB. BIOTECH serves as the national research and development organization specializing in agricultural, environmental, food and feeds, and health biotechnology.
The Institute capitalizes on the use of the country’s diverse collection of microorganisms, rich natural resources and agro-industrial waste and by-products to develop and advance alternative technologies and products towards improved agro-industrial productivity. The Institute develops cost-effective and environment friendly technologies for the production of goods and services that are comparable or better alternative to conventional products for their use in the following sectors: agriculture, forestry, environment, energy and industry.
UPLB Center for Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship
The Center for Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship (CTTE) was established by virtue of the BOR approval on July 27, 2007. The CTTE integrates programs, policies and activities towards the protection, promotion and successful disposition of the university’s technologies through licensing and technology business incubation to both the private and public sectors.
The CTTE is located at the 22-hectare Science and Technology Park (STP) and is composed of three existing units: the APEC Center for Technology Exchange and Training for Small and Medium Enterprises (ACTETSME), the Intellectual Property Rights Office (IPRO) and the UPLB-STP. The CTTE, through the ACTETSME, provides technical support for small and medium-scale enterprises in the country and the Asia-Pacific Region. Through the UPLB-STP, the CTTE makes laboratories, pilot plants, greenhouses, storage, and office spaces available for technology and business incubators and start-ups. The IPRO assists faculty members and researchers in the protection and valuation of UPLB technologies.
Museum of Natural History
The UPLB Museum of Natural History was established by UP BOR (877th meeting) on September 30, 1976. It has mandates as (1) a center of documentation as well as repository of biological specimens for scientific reference --this role parallels that of a library for written records; (2) a center of research; (3) a center of information on the basic aspects of biology, and a facility for training future naturalists; and (4) a center of education on the preservation of natural heritage as its activities will be related to man’s quest for knowledge and understanding of his relationship with the environment.
The Museum is composed of the following sub-units: Botanical Herbarium - 67,000 (including 6,500 flowering plant species, 1,000 ferns & fern allies, 3,600 mosses, and 260 hepatics & algae); Entomological Museum - 120,000 pinned insect specimens in 285 families and 22 orders + 5,000 slide-mounted insect specimens; + 75,000 slides of mites; Forestry Herbarium and Wood Collection - 11,325 specimens (representing 135 families, 645 genera, 1,106 species including 500 of yet undetermined new specimens, and 658 specimens of palms representing 18 genera and 103 species); Hortorium - 400 living species of food, medicinal, tonic, and ornamental plants; Microbial Culture Collection - 487 strains representing 189 bacteria, 135 yeasts and 163 mold collections; Mycological Herbarium - 11,000 specimens of ascomycetes, basidiomycetes, and myxomycetes; and Zoological and Wildlife Museum - 16,238 specimens including those which are on display.
UPLB Office for Initiatives in Culture and the Arts
The present thrust of the UP System to transform the constituent universities into major cultural centers in their respective regions has led the UPLB administration to create the UPLB Office for Initiatives in Culture and the Arts (OICA). Approved by the UP Board of Regents in its 1223rd meeting on August 22, 2007, the OICA aims to make the University a cultural center in the Southern Tagalog and Bicol regions.
The OICA systematizes UPLB’s art and culture programs and develops medium- and long-term plans for the campus. It also integrates and enhances the functions of the Southern Tagalog Studies Program (STSP) and the Bicol Studies Program (BSP). Aside from serving as UPLB’s policy-making body on developing and managing culture and arts, OICA coordinates cultural performances and artists’ exhibits, conserves and promotes Philippine historical and cultural heritage through scholarly study and documentation of traditions, arts, crafts, and other cultural resources. It also serves as the conduit for the exchange of creative works between UPLB staff and students and people in neighboring provinces.
Ugnayan ng Pahinungód Los Baños/ Oblation Corps
The Ugnayan ng Pahinungod program of UPLB is the venue for constituents and alumni to share time, energy and capabilities with underserved communities, marginalized groups and underprivileged individuals as well as to their fellow public servants. The program has been conducting different programs wherein UP constituents and alumni took part in serving our fellow Filipinos. Pahinungod conducts seven (7) development programs: Gurong Pahinungod Program (GPP), NSTP–LTS/CWTS, Community –Based Development Program/Project (CBP), Affirmative Action Program (AAP), Youth and Women Development Program (YWDP), Technical Assistance Program (TAP) and the Volunteer Development Program (VDP).
UPLB Gender Center
The UPLB Gender Center is an inter- and multi-disciplinary, university-wide unit. It is UPLB’s initiative to a national and global commitment towards the integration of gender perspective in development efforts. The Center aims to create and enhance awareness of gender issues in the university as well as in society; work out for the integration of gender concerns in the University’s academic, curricular, research, and extension programs; stimulate a critical assessment of differential impacts of development initiatives on men and women; serve as documentation and information center on gender issues related to rural development, technology and environment resource management; and provide a multi- and inter-disciplinary program within UPLB for gender-related activities in research, extension, and policy and advocacy.
UPLB Trans-disciplinary RDE Teams
Starting 2011, the university has started forming trans-disciplinary RDE teams which are entrusted to craft research proposals and implement programs that would encourage the participation of a number of expertise from various UPLB units, cutting across disciplines and areas of specializations, and also further the integration of other specialists from other UP units. A number of proposals have already been endorsed to the UP System (for the UP System Emerging Interdisciplinary Research Program Grant) and the Commission on Higher Education's Philippine Higher Education Research Network (PHERNet) Program.
Committees on Niches and Themes
Under the over-all coordination and support of the Office of the Vice-Chancellor for Research and Extension (OVCRE), the Committees on Niches and Themes have been formed in 2005 to help the University prime the process of reorienting programs to agriculture, environment and biotechnology. These groups provide the leadership in contacting and bringing together interested faculty and staff from various academic and research units who are currently involved or wish to be involved in formulating and carrying out specific plans, projects, and activities related to the assigned theme. The committees can also form working groups to formulate and recommend specific proposals for submission to the OVCRE and endorsement by the University to potential funding agencies and institutions.
Commodity-based RDE Teams
Due to the need for RDE groups which will coordinate the preparation, packaging, review and submission of commodity-based proposals to the Department of Agriculture (DA), DA-Bureau of Agricultural Research (DA-BAR), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), DOST-Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD) and other commodity-focused funding agencies, commodity-based RDE Teams have been created by the administration in 2008.
The Commodity RDE Teams ensure a more focused yet multi-disciplinary approach in the development of RDE projects. The teams formulate and package university-wide, multidisciplinary proposals for submission to funding agencies; assist the OVCRE in the review of special proposals; and craft long-term strategies for priority commodities identified and adopted by the funding agencies. The Commodity RDE teams include Rice, Corn, Coconut, Abaca, Rootcrops, Mango, Banana, Pili, Vegetables, Ornamentals, Legumes, Swine, Poultry, Dairy, and Ruminants.
Coordinators for Research and Extension
To promote university-wide dissemination and coordination in RDE matters among researchers and extensionists in the various UPLB units, coordinators for research and extension were identified by their respective college, institutes and departmental heads. Appointed by their supervisors on a yearly basis, the coordinators, assist their institutional heads in implementing research and extension-related activities. These coordinators are periodically met by the Vice-Chancellor for Research and Extension to discuss pressing issues or for information dissemination.