New book promotes role of research in sustainable development

Scholarship and research grantees of the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (Searca) have published a book illustrating the practical application and various research methodologies that support sustainable development.

Dr. Glenn Gregorio, Searca director, said the book was authored by 30 scientists and researchers from the Philippines, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam highlighting relevant methodologies they used for their research in their countries to tackle the challenges that bear on sustainable development.


“The book presents customized methodologies the authors have tested in their independent research work. It highlights and celebrates some commendable research and development breakthroughs supported by Searca and as such, it showcases the impact of Searca’s graduate scholarship program to Southeast Asia,” Gregorio said.

Virtually launched on Feb. 26, the 285-page book was the first collaborative publication project of the Regional Searca Alumni Association (RSAA), available in paperback and free of charge in its electronic form.

One of the authors, RSAA president and University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) professor Dr. Josefina Dizon said the association is gearing up for another collaborative book project which will be tied to Searca’s focus on sustainable agricultural and rural development.

The book editor, UPLB professor Inocencio Buot Jr., said there have been many methodologies and strategies developed to solve specific problems to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which may have evolved to suit different cultures or countries.

“Thus, it is very crucial to document such unique strategies and methodologies supportive of the SDGs for others to perhaps learn from and replicate,” Buot said.

Describing it as a unique compendium, the editor said the book is a scholarly account of peer-reviewed, science-based, and replicable methodologies in Southeast Asia.

He said six chapters of the book contain methodologies related to sustainable development in agriculture management while seven chapters deal on diverse topics on natural resources management.

Buot also underscored that the featured research methodologies were “conceptualized, or modified, and tested by the Searca alumni-authors themselves.”

Dr. Maria Cristeta Cuaresma, Seacra Program Head for Education and Collective Learning, said the book is forward-looking with emphasis on helping to monitor ecosystems and community resilience or bouncing back from disasters.

“Much like the current pandemic, disturbances causing drastic changes and disruption of processes were also emphasized in the book,” Cuaresma said.