JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Government is moving to review the Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Policy, as part of the process to improve the contribution of science and technology to national development.
  • Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, has instructed the re-constituted National Science, Technology and Innovation Commission to begin the review as a first order of business.
  • Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Phillip Paulwell, told JIS News that the Prime Minister, who is chair of the Commission, gave the directive at the first meeting of the Commission on October 29.

The Government is moving to review the Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Policy, as part of the process to improve the contribution of science and technology to national development.

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, has instructed the re-constituted National Science, Technology and Innovation Commission to begin the review as a first order of business.

Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Phillip Paulwell, told JIS News that the Prime Minister, who is chair of the Commission, gave the directive at the first meeting of the Commission on October 29.

He informed that acting on the instructions of the Prime Minister, a committee has been established, headed by University of the West Indies (UWI) Professor, Ishemkumba Kahwa, “to proceed with some alacrity to get that work done.”

Minister Paulwell, who was addressing a JIS Think Tank on October 30, said the push to expand the use of and access to technology resources by Jamaicans, is crucial to the country’s progress.

“My fundamental belief is that we’re not going to progress as a society if we continue to focus on being primary producers of goods and basic services.  Until we become totally pre-occupied with adding value to what we do, then we’re not going to get to the path of growth to enable the country to secure the jobs and prosperity it seeks. You’re not going to get there unless you use science and technology and to also focus on a culture of innovation,” said the Minister, who is Deputy Chair of the Commission.

He noted that the Prime Minister has also mandated the Commission to use Science and Technology Month in November, as a platform for popularizing science and technology in Jamaica.

“The Commission, at its first meeting, ratified a proposal for us to move toward greater popularization of science and technology, not only in the formal sector but in the informal as well. That is going to unfold quite significantly during the month (of (November),” he stated.

The new Commission comprises 28 members drawn from a cross-section of society including representatives of the Private Sector Organization of Jamaica; Ministry of Education; Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining; Northern Caribbean University; University of Technology; UWI; Scientific Research Council; Planning Institute of Jamaica; Jamaica Manufacturers Association; Jamaica Chamber of Commerce; National Environment and Planning Agency; JAMPRO; Bureau of Standards Jamaica; and Water Resources Authority.

At Wednesday’s meeting, the Commission approved a Secretariat headed by Professor Hon. Errol Morrison; as well as an Executive/Advisory Group chaired by Chairman of Jamaica Broilers Group, Hon. Robert Levy; with President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Scotiabank Jamaica, Jacqueline Sharp, as deputy chair.