On 22 September 2017, representatives from the UP Center for Integrative and Development Studies (UPCIDS) under the Program on Alternative Development, United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) , UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (UNACOM), and other national stakeholders gathered for the start-up workshop of the joint project now titled, ‘Transforming Research into Policy on Inclusive Social Development to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in the Philippines’.
With the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in mind, this project intends to promote the principle of social inclusion. In line with this, scholarship is given much attention for its potential to be a capable instrument in reviewing the current landscape and policies in the country involved in promoting social inclusion. As such, a Philippine Working Group (PWG) has been formed composed of UPCIDS as the lead agency, National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS), Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), and Commission on Human Rights (CHR) coming from the side of government. Civil society organizations, particularly Buhay Na May Dignidad Para Sa Lahat (DIGNIDAD) and the Network for Transformative Social Protection (NTSP), also form part of the project. More agencies are expected to be involved as the project progresses.
In the workshop, the PWG agreed to focus on community health programs and their health workforce as the project’s scope of study. This project is expected to be completed in six months. Currently, members of the PWG are working together to concretize the succeeding stages of the program. It is hoped that this undertaking will be able to identify the gaps in the current policies and assist in translating these policies into practice to achieve a more socially-inclusive development trajectory in the Philippines.
Photos courtesy of UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (UNACOM).