The Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS)leads the country in the observance of the 10th Development Policy Research Month (DPRM) this September with the theme Regional Economic Integration and Inclusive Growth: Engaging Nations, Embracing People.

The DPRM is a month-long celebration highlighting the importance of policy research and evidence-based policy to national development. It started with the issuance of Malacaang Proclamation No. 247 in 2002, which declared the month of September of every year as Development Policy Research Month. The Proclamation underscored the need for promoting, enhancing, instilling, and drawing awareness and appreciation of the importance and necessity of policy research.

The PIDS, being in the forefront of policy research in the country, was designated as the overall coordinator of all the programs and activities in the yearly observance of the DPRM. As a leading think tank, PIDS conducts studies on socioeconomic issues with the aim of assisting the government in crafting sound policies for national development.

In the previous years, the thematic focus of the DPRM dealt with national issues needing utmost attention and support from the government and other sectors. These topics include education, rice and food security policy, economic competitiveness, local governance, international labor migration, climate variability and change, and poverty alleviation, among others.

This years DPRM theme underscores the importance of regional economic integration in achieving higher and inclusive economic growth for the country. Around the world, regional economic communities have generated more trade and increased job opportunities and incomes, thereby improving peoples livelihoods and living conditions. Related to this, economic integration in East Asia is on the verge of a breakthrough with the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015.

Harnessing the full benefits of regional economic integration entails harmonizing regional and sovereign priorities and resolving issues on trade, investment, labor and migration, among others. In the Philippines, revitalizing the manufacturing sector and keeping it robust and expanding will ensure that benefits can be availed by the poor and less-skilled members of society. Thus, the various activities lined up for the celebration of the DPRM will hopefully provide the appropriate base to better understand and resolve the issues related to these.

The PIDS, as the lead organizer and in collaboration with the members of the 2012 DPRM Steering Committee, has lined up a number of fora and symposiums that will be among the main highlights of the celebration. These include the forum on Regional Economic Integration on Sept. 17 which is co-sponsored by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN (ERIA), the forum on Increasing Firm Competitiveness for Inclusive Growth on Sept. 24, and the forum entitled Does Economic Integration Promote Inclusiveness? on Sept. 25. The Institute will also host a Research Fair on Sept. 24-26 to commemorate its 35th founding anniversary. This fair will feature studies and researches of some 20 research and academic institutions.

This years DPRM Steering Committee is composed of the PIDS, Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC), National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Civil Service Commission, (CSC) and the Philippine Information Agency (PIA).

For more information regarding the 10th DPRM, log on to or you may call us at 893-5705/ 892-4059 (c/o Gizelle Manuel or Gift Baroy).

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