Industrial Tree Plantation (ITP) Research and Innovation Center
The Industrial Tree Plantation Research and Innovation Center (ITP Center) is a Research, Development and Innovation (RDI) center of Caraga State University, Butuan City. It was established in 2019 to play a pivotal role in the long-term upgrading of the wood-based industry in Caraga and the Philippines towards sustainable and inclusive economic growth. The Center will serve as the core in continually gathering science-based information through research to be the basis for policy formulation/reform, technology enhancement and for innovative product designs and contemporary wood products.
In late December 2018, the Caraga State University through the leadership of its Vice President for Research, Innovation and Extension (VPRIE) Dr. Rowena P. Varela together with faculty-researchers of the University proposed the establishment of the ITPS Center for funding consideration under the Accelerated R&D Program for Capacity Building of Research and Development Institutions and Industrial Competitiveness: Niche Centers in the Regions for R & D (NICER) Program by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).
The proposal went through a rigorous process and constant dialogue with its initial partners that included the DOST Caraga and the DOST Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD).
The proposal was eventually presented to the PCAARRD Director’s Council and the DOST Executive Committeee (Execom), and was favorably approved by the Execom on March 13, 2019. The Center formally started on October 1, 2019 with DOST Grant-in-Aid funding of P19,368,376.46 . With Dr. Varela acting as the Program Leader, this NICER Program initially consist of three (3) projects for implementation, funded by DOST and monitored by PCAARRD. These projects are:
Project 1. Development of a Project 1. Development of a Geodatabase of Industrial Tree Plantation in Caraga Region using Remote Sensing and GIS (led by Engr. Jojene R. Santillan)
Project 2. The Intermediaries Characteristics and Practices in the Wood Industry of Caraga Region:Documentation and Analysis for Pareto-based Forestry Policy Actions (led by Dr. Raquel Balanay)
Project 3. Analysis, Characterization, and Utilization of Wood Wastes from Tree Farms and WPPs in Caraga Region for Industrial Symbiosis (led by Dr. Rowena P. Varela)
The Center had its formal launching on November 28, 2019 at the Almont Inland Resort, Butuan City.