Budget 2019: RM400 million grant allocation for R&D a welcome move for varsities

TTF: The Government of Malaysia (GoM) has committed to maintaining the RM400m allocation for varsity research grants during the tabling of its 2019 budget.

TTF extends its deepest gratitude to the GoM on this count as these grants are very much needed to nurture and sustain innovative talent in key research areas.

The onus is now on the various public institutions of higher learning to identify these areas and the manner in which they choose to conduct research.

It is my hope that they steer away from the age old philosophy that they’re “at the top of the knowledge and wisdom chart” and realise, that varsities are run by members of society who are just as much influenced by communal norms as many of their researchers are.

Once they appreciate this, they will understand why the accumulation of knowledge and wisdom is really a two way process involving institutions of higher learning and the various communities at large.

It follows, that the best way forward for our researchers is to focus on knowledge transfer and sharing programs with the various communities that exist both locally and abroad.

Not only will this help concentrate research activity and keep it relevant, it helps pool together resources towards the conservation of funds to better sustain R&D in the longer run.

KUALA LUMPUR: The government has allocated RM400 million in grants for research and development (R&D) for higher learning institutions in the 2019 Budget in line with its aspiration to achieve high-income nation status.

The amount allocated equally to the provisions in the Budget 2018 will provide opportunities for local public universities to further enhance R&D through collaborations with agencies, both locally and overseas.

The five research universities – Universiti Malaya, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Universiti Teknologi Malaysia – will benefit from the grants for high impact research and innovations.

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, in tabling the budget, said the allocation under Strategy 8: Education for the Betterment of the Future, includes a matching grant of RM30 million for the Malaysia Partnership Programme and Alliances in Research (MyPAIR).

He said the matching grant was aimed at enhancing cooperation between public universities with local industries and international agencies in strategic areas.

Source: NST Online

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