Republic Act (RA) No. 11293 otherwise known as the “Philippine Innovation Act” was signed by President Rodrigo R. Duterte on April 17, 2019. The law mandates the creation of the National Innovation Council (NIC) that will steer the whole-of-government coordination and collaboration and to remove the fragmentation in the country’s innovation governance.
The NIC is also tasked to set the direction of the country’s innovation goals, priorities, and long-term national strategies through the formulation of the National Innovation Agenda and Strategy Document (NIASD).
Pursuant to Section 28 of the Act, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), in coordination with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), have prepared a harmonized version of the Philippine Innovation Act’s draft Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR).
To ensure greater transparency and inclusivity, the public is given the opportunity to provide inputs or comments to the draft IRR until January 6, 2020.
Links to the downloadable files of the Philippine Innovation Act and the Draft IRR are as follows:
Rest assured that all your responses will be treated with utmost confidentiality.
You may submit your inputs or comments through the Google Online Form below.
Salient Provisions of the Philippine Innovation Act
The specific objectives of this Act are as follows:
- Promote a culture of strategic planning and innovation to encourage creative thinking and knowledge creation and dissemination towards expanding and maintaining economic competitiveness;
- Improve innovation governance in the country and compel the adoption of a long-term vision and focused priorities for innovation;
- Ensure effective coordination and eliminate fragmentation of innovation policies and programs at all levels;
- Strengthen the position of MSMEs in the innovation system;
- Remove obstacles to innovation by suppressing bureaucratic hurdles, and adapting the regulatory framework to support the creation of and diffusion of new knowledge, products, and processes;
- Encourage entrepreneurial attitude in order to stimulate growth ambitions in businesses, especially among MSMEs;
- Explore, promote and protect the potentials for innovation of traditional knowledge, traditional cultural expressions and genetic resources; and
- Strengthen and deepen interactions and partnerships among different actors from the public and private sector, academe, MSMEs, research and development institutions and communities towards promoting inclusive growth and improving the quality of life through innovation.
Section 6. National Innovation Council. – The National Innovation Council, hereinafter referred to as the NIC, is hereby established to develop the country’s innovation goals, priorities, and long-term national strategy. The NIC shall be composed of the following:
(b) Director General of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) – Vice Chairperson;
(c) Secretary of Science and Technology – Member;
(d) Secretary of Trade and Industry – Member;
(e) Secretary of Agriculture – Member;
(f) Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources – Member;
(g) Secretary of Health – Member;
(h) Secretary of Transportation – Member;
(i) Secretary of Energy – Member;
(j) Secretary of National Defense – Member;
(k) Secretary of Information and Communications Technology – Member;
(l) Chairperson of the Commission on Higher Education – Member;
(m) Secretary of Budget and Management – Member;
(n) Secretary of Education-Member;
(o) Secretary of the Interior and Local Government – Member;
(p) Secretary of Foreign Affairs – Member;
(q) Secretary of Labor and Employment – Member;
(r) Director General of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines – Member; and
(s) Seven (7) Executive Members to be appointed by the President.
The Executive Members shall be appointed from the ranks of business, entrepreneurs, academe, and the scientific community, at least one (1) of whom shall be a woman.
There shall be at least one (1) representative from the MSME sector, and at least one (1) from the business sector. The representatives of business and the MSME shall be recommended by a legally established and reputable business organization. Those to be appointed from the academe and the scientific community shall have at least seven (7) years of experience in the field of science and technology, research and development, or innovation.
The President may designate the Executive Secretary to attend on his behalf and preside over the meetings of the NIC. The Department Secretaries and other members may not designate alternate representatives other than their respective undersecretaries to the meetings of the NIC.
(b) Develop the country’s innovation strategies to ensure coherent strategic direction and programs;
(c) Serve as a source of strategic intelligence for national research and innovation policy-making;
(d) Engage technological expertise in strategic and innovation policy-making;
(e) Coordinate with various sectors and agencies to promote policy and program coherence;
(f) Monitor and asses the country’s strategic and innovation programs;
(g) Regularly review and update the country’s strategic and innovation policies;
(h) Guided by the legal mandates of the agencies and LGUs concerned, identify and task government agencies and LGUs that will be tasked to implement specific strategies under the National Innovation Agenda and Strategy Document (NIASD), to be developed under Section 9 of this Act;
(i) Communicate the country’s innovation policies, priorities, and agenda to local and international publics;
(j) Establish and administer the Innovation Fund established in Section 21 of this Act;
(k) Identify and approve programs that may qualify for funding from the Innovation Fund;
(l) Develop metrics and monitor the progress of strategic innovation programs, including publicly funded RD&E projects;
(m) Implement an action agenda for the development of the country’s capacity for, and success in innovation as measured by the Global Innovation Index and other indices and measures that it may deem appropriate in measuring the growth and development of innovation in the country, or among countries;
(n) Submit annual reports to the Congress of the Philippines on the progress of implementation of this Act; and
(o) Perform other functions as maybe necessary for the implementation of this Act.
The initial staffing structure and complement of the Secretariat shall be submitted by the NEDA to the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for funding. Pending the creation of the appropriate plantilla positions, the NEDA shall constitute an interim Secretariat within one (1) month from the effectivity of this Act, through the temporary detail of personnel from its member agencies.
The Secretariat shall have the following functions:
(b) Consult with experts who can offer insights on innovation policymaking and priority setting;
(c) Coordinate with various agencies of the government and private sector, academe, scientific community and other sector stakeholders towards achieving policy and program coherence;
(d) Design and implement an innovative startup development program aimed to support entities and individual entrepreneurs developing an innovative product, process or business model;
(e) Gather strategic intelligence and information to support the NIC in its policy making, as well as in goal and strategy setting;
(f) Build strategic intelligence on human capital development;
(g) Assess the effectiveness of existing science and technology, and innovation grant programs and scholarships, and submit recommendations to the NIC on these programs, according to the NIASD framework in accordance with Section 9 of this Act;
(h) Draft a set of “relevance criteria” which shall be used by the NIC to evaluate RD&E proposals for public funding through the Innovation Fund;
(i) Develop and administer metrics for monitoring and evaluation of the country’s innovation programs;
(j) Develop recommendations for consideration by the NIC; and
(k) Perform other functions as may be directed by the NIC.
In developing the NIASD, the NIC shall identify strategies to stimulate regional capacity for development that can contribute to differentiated innovation strategy across regions in the medium term. Such differentiated strategies shall take into consideration the competitive advantages and strengths of each province, region and community.
The NIASD shall also include the innovation priority areas, the strategies to be used to realize these priorities, and for which resources and budget will be provided. Agenda and strategies shall have a minimum of ten (10)-year horizon, subject to the periodic review by the NIC. All agencies shall strictly comply with the NIASD and shall pursue this as a collective, national effort. The agencies concerned shall incorporate pertinent programs in their respective work programs and action plans, guided by the NIASD.
The NIASD shall be developed in consultation with government agencies, Regional Development Councils (RDCs), LGUs, and other stakeholders, and shall be completed within six (6) months from the effectivity of this Act.
(b) The blue economy;
(c) Education and the academe;
(e) Secure, clean and reliable energy;
(f) Climate change and disaster resilience;
(g) Resource efficiencies;
(h) National and community-based comparative advantages in the context of global value chains;
(i) Comparative strengths and advantages of sectors and communities;
(j) Potentials for innovation of traditional knowledge, traditional cultural expressions, and genetic resources;
(k) Infrastructure needs;
(m) Development of human capital;
(n) Digital economy; and
(o) Transportation services; among others.
- technology extension services;
- standard business practices in contracting, accounting and project management;
- quality control;
- business services such as commercialization and management;
- patents, among others.
Through a STARTUP MSME INNOVATION DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM, the government shall mobilize its various agencies to work hand in hand with private organizations to provide technical and/or financial support programs for the development training of entrepreneurs.
The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) shall look for high productivity innovative businesses to help them identify and exploit opportunities in overseas markets.
The NIC shall develop metrics for the purposes of assessing the progress of work in these areas.
The DTI and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) shall collaborate in ensuring complementation of and coherence in programs that provide innovation-related services to MSMEs and innovators.
These programs shall build links between tertiary institutions, research institutions, and industry towards creating avenues for knowledge diffusion and capacity building. Government-Academic-Business research collaborations shall be pursued to foster future innovations.
For this purpose, the NIC shall develop a “relevance criteria” that will be administered by the agencies concerned in the selection of RD&E programs or projects for funding. It shall likewise prepare an inventory of academic or educational and RD&E institutions, together with their resources and capacities to undertake these programs and projects which will provide the strategic intelligence for the generation of public funding and grants for these purposes.
The NIC shall also monitor the implementation of these projects and ensure that they comply with the criteria established for the purpose and meet the objectives for which they were funded. A system for “peer review” may be established for this purpose.
As part of strategies to address the multi-dimensional nature of certain research requirements, the NIC shall:
(b) Establish centers of collaborative research activity between academic and business; and
(c) Mandate pertinent agencies to work with academic or educational and research institutions to provide research infrastructure to support key research areas.
The NIC shall recommend to Congress of the Philippines the annual proposed level of Gross Expenditure on Research and Development (GERD) based on the NIASD. This recommendation shall be submitted at the beginning of each annual budget cycle.
(b) Innovation centers;
(c) Innovation networks;
(d) Technology platforms;
(e) Cluster policies; and
(f) Human capacity building programs.
For this purpose, the NIC shall develop strategies by which government agencies concerned may harness these instruments to more efficiently deliver programs and promote greater collaboration among stakeholders. These agencies, enumerated in Section 17 of this Act, shall submit their respective action plans, guided by the strategies that will be imposed by the NIC.
The establishment of innovation centers shall be undertaken in coordination with the private sector, academic, or education institutions, and other sectors to maximize opportunities for collaboration and joint initiatives.
This approach shall facilitate engagement with business, the RD&E sector, MSMEs, and the broader community towards ensuring the full and effective implementation of the country’s innovation agenda.
All government agencies concerned, including the following, shall be responsible for implementing the country’s innovation strategies and, as such, shall observe the “whole of government approach” provided herein:
- a) National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA);
- b) Department of Science and Technology (DOST);
- c) Department of Trade and Industry (DTI);
- d) Department of Agriculture (DA);
- e) Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR);
- f) Department of Health (DOH);
- g) Department of Energy (DOE);
- h) Department of Transportation (DOTr);
- i) Department of National Defense (DND);
- j) Department of Information and Communications (DICT);
- k) Department of Budget and Management (DBM);
- l) Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG);
- m) Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA);
- n) Department of Education (DepEd);
- o) Commission on Higher Education (CHED);
- p) Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE); and
- q) Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL).
Government agencies shall make available for public access, a joint web portal that will bear information pertinent to innovation policies, strategies, programs, including services, grants and financial assistance for related trainings. The agencies shall likewise ensure that beneficiaries are guided on services that are available. The web portal shall also include a database of all ongoing and completed innovation projects implemented under the NIASD.
It shall have interactive features that will allow the public to access services or file applications for scholarships or other services and programs online. Inquiries shall be addressed within three (3) days from receipt thereof. Processing of applications for scholarships and other services shall be streamlined in accordance with the guidelines to be established by the NIC. Reforms to this effect shall be reported to the NIC within six (6) months from the effectivity of this Act.
The online facility shall provide an acknowledgment receipt and reference number for each transaction for monitoring purposes.
Government agencies concerned shall submit periodic progress reports to the NIC on the status of innovation strategies and projects. Reportorial requirements prescribed under this Act shall take into consideration reports required under other laws related to innovation, with the view to harmonizing and achieving efficiencies in the preparation of these reports. Reporting guidelines shall be prepared by the NIC for this purpose.
The enumeration of agencies provided herein is without prejudice to other agencies that the NIC may mandate.
The NIC, in coordination with the DOLE, the Bureau of Immigration, the Bureau of Customs, the DFA, among other agencies, shall establish the necessary mechanisms to facilitate the participation of qualified members of the Filipino diaspora in the country’s innovation drive.
The NIC shall develop an inventory of skills and talent requirements, and the institutions or programs needing them as basis for inviting Filipinos in the diaspora to participate in the program.
The NIC shall develop the guidelines for this purpose, in coordination with the DOST and other agencies that have existing programs and funding for purposes of mobilizing overseas Filipino talents for innovation and science and technology efforts.
The pertinent agencies of the government shall promote the diffusion of knowledge and information for the promotion of national development.
The IPOPHL shall promote the registration of patents, trademarks, copyrights, industrial designs and geographical indications among scientists, inventors and innovators to ensure protection of innovation against misappropriation.
It shall streamline and rationalize administrative and registration procedures and undertake programs to assist MSMEs in the registration of patents, trademarks, copyrights, industrial designs and geographical indications. Reforms to this effect shall be reported to the NIC within six months from the effectivity of the Act, and every year thereafter.
The government shall undertake its advocacy and community education program, in partnership with the business sector and business associations, MSMEs, incubation centers and networks, Negosyo Centers, and academic or educational institutions.
LGUs are also hereby mandated to create innovation programs through collaboration with other government agencies, nongovernment organizations, academic institutions and private companies. LGUs may provide incentives for the implementation of various innovation instruments, including the provisions of Section 16 of the Act.
The NIC shall develop a communication plan for this purpose.
Subject to availability of funds, a revolving fund in the initial amount of One Billion Pesos (₱1,000,000,000.00), is hereby allocated for the initial year’s implementation of the Act, and such funds necessary for its continuous and effective implementation shall thereafter be included in the annual General Appropriations Act.
Further, the NIC, in coordination with the agencies concerned, shall explore the possibility of accessing a growing range of bilateral and multilateral funds in order to be able assist in the funding of RD&E and other innovation efforts. Public-private partnerships shall also be encouraged in the development and implementation of innovation initiatives in the sphere of RD&E, education, product development and testing, among others.
Government agencies and LGUs shall hereby improve efficiencies in addressing public transactions that impact on innovation, including reducing the number of days and costs of starting or expanding a business.
Government agencies and LGUs shall undertake reforms in their systems and process to ensure that applications for starting a business and renewal of licensees are processed within three (3) working days from the time the application is received. The processing of other government permits and clearances, a s well as applications for patents, shall likewise be streamlined towards ensuring business environment that fosters innovation.
For this purpose, the NIC shall develop and prescribed guidelines towards streamlining and improving the country’s performance in key indicators that will facilitate and promote innovation. The NIC shall identify these indicators for purposes of issuing guidelines and monitoring strict implementation.