The federal government plans to invest about Rs 30 billion in science and technology based projects and programmes to boost scientific and technological innovation, entrepreneurship and strengthen a knowledge-driven economy.
This was revealed by noted scientist Dr Atta-ur-Rahman, the vice chairman of Task Force on Technology Driven Knowledge Economy during a high level meeting held at the Lahore Knowledge Park Company on Wednesday.
Dr Atta informed the attendants that the research portfolio of Pakistan was encouraging, as the number of publications had increased significantly during the last couple of years. He said the country had amassed a critical mass to develop an enabling environment for reaping the fruits of technology-based initiatives and strengthening knowledge economy in our country.
The meeting, co-chaired by Punjab Higher Education Minister Raja Yasir Humayun and Dr Atta-ur-Rehman, was convened to take stock of initiatives being taken by the Government of Punjab to foster knowledge economy, innovation and technology-driven development. Other notable attendants included Higher Education Department Secretary Momin Agha and Lahore Knowledge Park Company Chairman Lt Gen (R) Muhammad Akram Khan.
The participants agreed that LKPC could become a potential hub for boosting knowledge economy of Punjab and Pakistan. The attendants also reviewed the objectives of LKPC and agreed to work for developing an ecosystem of knowledge-based economy.
HED Minister Raja Yasir said he wished to bring uniformity in the courses being offered at various levels, along with introducing transferrable credit hours.
The HED secretary opined that LKPC could act as a secretariat of all initiatives to be taken in Punjab related to incubation, entrepreneurship, centers of excellence, linking knowledge and enhancing the quality of research and higher education. The participants also discussed state of current institutions and opined that the standards should be raised to a higher level. The meeting also mulled establishment of new institutions in collaboration with top-ranked universities of the world.
Lt Gen (R) Muhammad Akram, who is also the chairman of the Punjab Textbook Board, informed the participants that technology subjects at the matriculation and higher secondary syllabus had been included in textbooks.