The Directorate General of Science and Technology successfully unveiled 13 new science programmes worth 1.5 billion rupees under the “Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Science Agenda” in Peshawar on 11th October 2022.
The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Science Agenda is set to usher in a new age of scientific discovery, technological innovation and economic prosperity in the province. The multi-faceted Agenda will empower scientists, researchers and innovators in KP – of all ages – to not only value-add and leverage the natural resources but also harness the power of cutting-edge developments in emerging technologies.
The KP Science Agenda will set our focus on 8 key natural resources & 3 cutting-edge areas of the future that will enable KPK to build a critical mass in these strategic areas in terms of both Human Resource & infrastructure.
Three areas o focus for cutting edge technologies will include:
- Advanced Materials: This industry will be worth 2.1 trillion USD by 2025 worldwide. From ceramics, colloids & composites to biomaterials, nanomaterials & catalysts, these materials have superior performance.
- Biomedicine: It includes biotechnology, biomanufacturing, genomics, medical devices & digital health. Using cutting-edge tools such as big data analytics, it is set to transform multiple industries.
- Space Sciences: Space Sciences includes astronomy, applied physics, mathematics, remote sensing & aeronautics. The space economy is set to cross a USD 1 trillion dollar market in 2040.
The Science Agenda for KP identifies eight key natural resources which have value chains already existing in the province, waiting to be enhanced through innovation in science and technology. These include:
2. Bees & Honey
3. Fruits & Vegetables
5. Herbs & Medicinal Plants 6. Micro Hydro Plants
8. Urban Environment
Programmes Under The Agenda
- Frontiers in Science Grants Programme in 3 cutting edge areas
- Made in KP Grants Programme in 8 areas covering KP’s natural resources.
- The Interdisciplinary Research Training Centre for o ering fellowships and studentships to postdoctoral scholars as well as masters and undergraduate students
- Patenting and Prototyping Fund
- Technology Transfer Support Programme
- Travel Awards for Conferences and Competitions
- The High-Tech Laboratories network in all disciplines across KP
- A state-of-the-art Science Museum
- STEAM events for the general public to create a culture of science.
- The Science and Technology Advisory Council with an eclectic group of international experts to chart out a 10 year plan.
- Task Forces in each of the 8 thematic areas to map each landscape.
- Annual Roadshows to promote developments in the 8 key natural resources of KP m. S&T Data and Policy Unit
“Tools for Science”
The ‘Tools for Science Programme’ aims to develop a network of well-lubricated & operational equipment that are available to scientists in all corners of KP & beyond. It also aims to establish a community around each high-tech facility through year-round workshops & social events.
Some examples of equipment to be included in the programme
- High-performance liquid chromatography instruments
- Electron microscopes
- Confocal microscopes
- XRD instruments
- Ultra-low-temperature freezers
The agenda will provide grants for maintaining a network of hi-tech equipment and patenting & prototyping innovations.
An MoU was also signed among KP Science Agenda, Directorate of Science and Technology KPK and SUPARCO in the unveiling event.
Bashir Ahmad is a medical student working as a freelance writer, graphic designer and social media manager for Pakscience, Scientia Pakistan and many other platforms. Tap on the social media links below to connect with him.