Islamabad (Staff Report): The Higher Education Commission (HEC) held its quarterly meeting of National ORIC (Offices of Research, Innovation and Commercialisation) Forum at its Secretariat.
Dr. Arshad Ali, Executive Director, HEC chaired the meeting. The meeting focused on a two-point agenda i.e. presenting progress of federal and provincial ORICs and sharing proposals to bring the National ORIC Forum in line with Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM).
Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Arshad Ali termed the progress of regional forums satisfactory and said that the development will pave the way for building knowledge-based economy. He said that all regional ORICs need to identify their strength and share resources with others making equally beneficial for the community. He informed the participants that Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry celebrated first week of April as University-Industry Linkages Week. He maintained that HEC and its regional centres along with federal and provincial ORICs will start celebrating the first week of April as University-Industry Linkages Week from the next year. He urged the ORICs to conduct events in relevant regional Chambers of Commerce to create job opportunities and develop entrepreneurial ventures.
The Executive Director also shared initiation of the Best ORIC Award, directing the focal universities of ORIC Forums to prepare and propose evaluation performa for the next National ORIC Forum meeting. He assured that HEC will provide Rs. 0.5 million to focal universities of regional ORIC Forums. This amount, he said, will only be utilised on ORIC Forums and HEC’s R&D Division will audit and monitor its utilisation.
In the meeting, it was unanimously decided that quarterly meeting of National ORIC Forum will be held bi-annually.
Bahria University, Islamabad, Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), Dow University, Karachi, Institute of Management Sciences, Peshawar, Balochistan University of Information Technology, Engineering and Management Sciences, Quetta, and Azad Jammu Kashmir University were selected to respectively represent the Federal ORIC Forum, Punjab ORIC Forum, Sindh ORIC Forum, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa ORIC Forum, Balochistan ORIC Forum and AJK ORIC Forum for a period of two years.
To foster culture of research, innovation and commercialisation in Pakistan, HEC has established 61 ORICs in various universities across Pakistan. These offices are mandated to facilitate students and faculty to boost research on one hand while on the other hand bridge the academia-industry gap. In the meeting, all provincial ORIC Forums presented their progress since inception of these ORICs.