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BCAARRD’s project with ParSU reaches completion

Upon the completion of the Project 4 of the Pili Niche Centers in the Regions (NICER) program, Partido State University (ParSU), through the Bicol Consortium of Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (BCAARRD) hosted by Bicol Univeristy (BU), virtually launched the Pili Information System and Marketplace portal last February 17, 2021.

The 4th Project entitled “A Comprehensive PILI (Canarium ovatum Engl.) Information System Utilizing Web 2.0 Technologies: A Roadmap Towards KM Buildup” is part of the Pili NICER program of the Bicol Consortium of Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (BCAARRD) It is funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) under the Science for Change Program with DOST – Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic, and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD) as the monitoring agency. It commenced last October 1, 2019 and is scheduled to end on 31 March 2021.

The Pili IS and Marketplace’s objectives are to design and develop a comprehensive Pili Information System backend covering logical and physical database components; to design, develop and implement the corresponding Pili IS frontend incorporating collaborative social network functionalities, visual features, reports generation, and other components; deploy the IS in a public IP address and domain name; integrate Data Analytics and E-Commerce engines into the IS and interface modules; establish guidelines, policies, protocols, procedures for the maintenance and operation of the system; conduct capability building activities/trainings on the stakeholders and BCAARRD staff; and to evaluate the Pili IS based on ISO 25010:2011 quality model.

BU, along with ParSU and Central Bicol State University of Agriculture (CBSUA) are implementing the Pili Research and Development (R&D) Center under the NICER Program. Hosted by BU College of Agriculture and Forestry (CAF), the PILI NICER Program started in October 2019.

Dr. Ronnel R. Atole, ParSU ICTMO Director, heads the said project along with Mr. Rowell John B. Artiaga as the designer and developer of the main Pili IS front-end/portal; Mr. John Rey S. Lirag as the designer of the backend/database of the Pili IS and is responsible for the creation, normalization and optimization of the 80 tables in the database server; Mr. Leo Constantine S. Bello as the designer and developer of the Pili Marketplace; with Mr. Salvador B. Briones, II is in-charge of the project’s quality control and performance evaluation. All of the members in the Pili IS Project Team are members of the faculty of ParSU.

After one year of implementation, the main output of the said project developed the Pili IS and Marketplace interactive portal. Dr. Atole reported that they were also faced with issues and challenges while developing the project. He stated that during development, one of the concerns was that the database must be comprehensive and scalable. The limited data availability and payment method in the Pili Marketplace was also a concern. But among all the challenges, they were faced with an unpredicted one – the Covid-19 pandemic. Nevertheless, the Project 4 Team still managed to deliver exemplary results with the Pili IS and Marketplace.

In the presentation given by Dr. Atole, he cited why they are launching or presenting the information system and marketplace, which is to present the main output and its fundamental functionalities that are now available for public use and access. He also stated that the launching is part of the IS development cycle, referring to it as the Beta release.

Moreover, Dr. Atole said that the presentation aims to gather additional inputs and recommendations, which may be integrated for the next version as the system evolves. It likewise aims to inform the stakeholders and the public and to disseminate their training plan.

The proposed dates for the Training-Workshop on Pili IS operations, procedures and guidelines for DOST-PCAARRD, BCAARRD, Pili Farmers, Producers, Processors, Traders, Researchers and other Stakeholders are on March 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, and 21, this year. Through the training, participants will gain knowledge and skills in using the Pili IS and be acquainted on the operational guidelines, procedures, and policies specifically on content management control.

The virtual launching commenced with BCAARRD Director and Pili NICER Program Leader Dr. Marissa N. Estrella, a professor from BU College of Agriculture and Fisheries, who delivered the welcome remarks and congratulated the developers of the Pili IS and Marketplace.

Regional Research and Development Coordinating Council (RRDCC) Chairperson and BU President Arnulfo M. Mascariñas delivered his message, acknowledging the efforts of ParSU President Dr. Raul Bradecina, Executive Director of DOST-PCAARRD Dr. Reynaldo V. Ebora represented by PCAARRD’s Crop Research Division Director Dr. Edna Anit, and all the people behind the project.

Dr. Mascariñas said that due to the changing consumer dynamics, the Pili Marketplace portal can also be an effective way to further promote our region’s pride, thus bringing the local to the global world.

“Friends, the world that we know is changing, and we need to keep up with the times as the world becomes increasingly digital. While technologies are indeed huge drivers in this transformation, innovation goes beyond technology. As what Partido State University showed us today, one can create an opportunity even in the most challenging times such as this Covid-19 pandemic. One only needs a creative mind, a willing heart and able heart to do what needs to be done,” Mascariñas said.

The launch of the Pili IS and Marketplace was attended by the 22 Consortium Member Institutions in Bicol. DOST V Director Rommel Serrano and his staff were also present together with their personnel from provincial offices. The private sector was represented by the President of PhilPILI, Inc., Mr. Joriz Olbes and the Executive Director, Grace Dulce Tordilla. (Julianne Nicolle G. Moral, SRA, BCAARRD)

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