Science Outlook 2015

 

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Action Towards Vision

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SCIENCE OUTLOOK Research and Policy Recommendations Document © Academy of Sciences Malaysia 2015 All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be produced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise without the prior permission of the Copyright owner. The views and opinions expressed or implied in this publication are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia. Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia Cataloguing-in-Publication Data Science Outlook: Action Towards Vision ISBN 978-983-2915-17-1 i. Science and Technology--Malaysia ii. Science and State-- Malaysia 303.483 All requests to extract information or reproduce content from this document in whole or in parts should be submitted to: Academy of Sciences Malaysia Level 20, West Wing, MATRADE Tower Jalan Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah off Jalan Tuanku Abdul Halim 50480 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Phone: + 603.6203.0633 Fax: + 603.6203.0634 www.akademisains.gov.my As Malaysia prepares itself towards 2020, there is a need to better understand and harness Malaysia’s STI capabilities, capacity and potential to devise a more realistic and pragmatic implementation strategy, as well as an approach for socio-economic transformation and inclusive growth. Science Outlook signifies a new beginning in an effort to bring Malaysia’s STI development to the next level.

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Contents Foreword by The Honourable Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation Foreword by ASM President 2 Preface by the Chairperson 4 Conduct of the Study 6 Advisory and Working Groups 11 List of Tables 15 List of Figures 16 Acronyms 17 Introduction 20 Chapter 1: STI Governance 31 Chapter 2: Research, Development and Commercialisation (R,D&C) 51 Chapter 3: STI Talent 69 Chapter 4: Energising Industries 83 Chapter 5: STI Enculturation 95 Chapter 6: Strategic International Alliance 107 Further Readings 121 References 201 Acknowledgements 209

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FOREWORD BY THE HONOURABLE MINISTER OF SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION I would like to commend the Academy of Sciences Malaysia (ASM) which serves as a national STI think tank, for the exemplary and timely effort in producing Science Outlook 2015: Action towards Vision. This report provides a much needed independent review, evidence-based analysis and insights on the STI landscape in Malaysia based on the strategic thrusts of the current National Policy on Science, Technology and Innovation (NPSTI), 2013-2020 as well as the way forward. As the ministry mandated to lead the national Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) agenda of the nation, the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) has a major responsibility to ensure an enabling ecosystem for STI to thrive. The key building blocks or strategic thrusts are effective governance, robust research, development & commercialisation (R,D&C), competent STI talent, invigorated industries, STI encultured society as well as strategic international alliances. The government is committed to facilitating requisite infrastructure, institutional framework, collaborative platforms and incentives to drive STI for socio-economic transformation. However, it is necessary to first analyse our current position, capacity and capabilities to determine how resources and investments should be deployed towards realising envisioned outcomes. In this context, Science Outlook 2015 would certainly serve as a useful reference. STI cannot be considered in isolation as it cuts across economic sectors, ministries and knowledge domains. Science Outlook 2015 advocates transformative thinking, integrated planning and inclusive implementation of the national STI agenda and this resonates well with MOSTI’s goals. I hope Science Outlook 2015 will spur and catalyze action to effectively leverage STI towards boosting national productivity and competitiveness. The findings, gap analysis, incisive perspectives, benchmarking as well as way forward prescriptions highlighted in the report will serve as a useful reference not just for the policy makers, but also for other stakeholders such as the scientific community, economists and industry practitioners. I consider Science Outlook 2015 by ASM, a strategic document that offers timely insights into the Malaysian STI landscape and the way forward.

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... STI cuts across economic sectors, ministries and knowledge domains... Datuk Seri Panglima Madius Tangau

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FOREWORD BY ASM PRESIDENT The Academy of Sciences Malaysia (ASM) in fulfilling its role as a “Thought Leader” in the science, technology and innovation (STI) arena is committed to relentlessly champion STI advancement and excellence for national development and global competitiveness. ASM translates this mission into action by undertaking strategic STI studies and delivering programmes that mobilise a wide spectrum of expertise not only within the Academy but also its network of prominent international partners and linkages. Our efforts are bolstered by an immense sense of responsibility and urgency to see STI being effectively harnessed for wealth creation and societal well-being. As a STI think tank, ASM strives to provide the best scientific advice that is independent, credible, relevant and timely in nature. This is made possible through the cultivation of a robust ideation process that explores creative avenues, different perspectives and varied expertise. This has resulted in scientific advice that takes into account multi-sectorial feedback, a futuristic outlook and approaches that transcend conventional discipline boundaries. One of the flagship initiatives that ASM embarked on last year is to produce a biennial Science Outlook report. Therefore, ASM is pleased to publish Malaysia’s first Science Outlook that presents an independent review of key trends in STI in Malaysia. The Science Outlook is aimed at providing evidence-based insights and 2 new perspectives on the Malaysian STI landscape. It is hoped that this Science Outlook will be a useful reference for informed decision-making. As you go through the Report, you may find that the issues highlighted are ‘nothing new’. However, this time around, ASM has endeavoured to present the issues with supporting data and evidence along with recommendations to address them effectively. If requisite action is not taken with a sense of urgency, the same issues will keep coming up until something is done differently to successfully address them. Hence, the tagline of this inaugural Science Outlook Report is, “Action towards Vision”. From the very beginning of the STI agenda in the national policy framework to the current National Policy on Science, Technology and Innovation (2013-2020), we have come far. Over the years, we have identified and built formidable STI networks locally, regionally and globally, with the intention of strategically positioning Malaysia in STI, encouraging crosspollination between industry and academia as well as leveraging on a common pool of ideas, talents and resources. Among the visible outcomes of our endeavours include improved research and development (R&D) and technological capabilities as well as greater public awareness and understanding on the role and relevance of science for society. However, even with the robust policy framework, government support and private sector participation, the implementation of policy measures seems to be fragmented and eclectic with multiple agencies and institutions competing to get their voices heard. Such disparities have proved to be counterproductive, especially in meeting the singular objective of fully harnessing our STI potential and contributing positively to national development. Even when setting STI targets for policy making and planning, it is of utmost importance to evaluate and analyse our current position, capacity and capabilities to objectively consider whether they are practical and achievable towards realising envisioned outcomes. The vision to transform Malaysia into a STIpowered, high-income economy, calls for commitment to integrate STI in development policies and national plans towards sustainable, people-centered solutions. When it comes to issues concerning low capacity for innovation, fewer investments in technology, poor orientation towards science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education and low private sector participation in R&D for commercialisation there is a need like never before, for the execution of integrated, strategic interventions in the spirit of national interest. We need to revisit our implementation strategies, and support ideas or solutions that will help us appreciate and harness

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the role of STI for national development. To achieve this vision, we need to mobilise action by bringing together all the proponents of STI and advocate a unified strategy. I am confident that this Report will provide the necessary impetus and motivation to relook at STI with a renewed vision. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate and thank all members of the Science Outlook Steering Committee, under the able leadership of Professor Datuk Dr Halimaton Hamdan FASc, as well as other ASM Fellows and Associates who contributed through the various Working Groups as well as all those who were involved in one way or another for concerted effort in publishing this inaugural Science Outlook. ASM hopes the Report can be institutionalised and published every two years with the purpose of reporting real-time progress on the adoption and implementation of various STI policies, programmes and platforms, as defined under the current policy framework. On behalf of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia, I would also like to sincerely thank all government ministries, agencies, institutions of higher learning, research institutes as well as industry and corporate entities who have participated in providing input or data for the Report. ASM looks forward to constructive feedback from the various stakeholders and partner organisations. I hope this Science Outlook will facilitate the harnessing of STI for national development and global competitiveness. ... Action Towards Vision: Harnessing our STI potential ... Tan Sri Datuk Dr Ahmad Tajuddin Ali FASc 3

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PREFACE BY THE CHAIRPERSON In carrying out its function as a science, technology and innovation (STI) think tank, the Academy of Sciences Malaysia (ASM) has published its first Science Outlook that provides an independent review of key trends in STI in Malaysia. This inaugural edition has focused on the National Policy on Science, Technology and Innovation (NPSTI, 2013-2020) and its six pillars namely: (i) Transforming STI governance; (ii) Advancing scientific and social research, development and commercialisation; (iii) Developing, harnessing and intensifying talent; (iv) Energising industries; (v) STI enculturation as well as (vi) Enhancing strategic international alliance. The philosophy of the Report is to evaluate where we are in STI, benchmark ourselves with other countries that are advancing well in STI, identify the gaps, consider future implications and recommend the way forward to realise our aspirations. The study process was carried out by a Steering Committee and six Working Groups that involved a wide array of experts and analysts as well as four international reviewers. Eighty-one national policies were analysed and almost hundred and ninety four references were evaluated during the study. Analysis of historical, secondary and primary data was carried out. In addition, a benchmarking of best practices and analysis of various models of selected countries gllobally was carried out. This facilitated the charting of outcomes at various stages of STI development as well as identifying the gaps vis-à-vis the set policy targets. The views and opinions presented in this Report are substantiated with verified facts, figures, primary as well as secondary data, case studies and inferences drawn by economists and statisticians. In a nutshell, it presents an independent analysis and consolidated report on key STI trends and development in Malaysia in the context of the NPSTI pillars for evidence-based, informed decision making. On behalf of ASM, I would like to acknowledge the support of various subject experts, industry practitioners, scientists and statisticians, researchers and writers, for their tireless efforts in making this Report possible. This document highlights pertinent areas that need to be effectively addressed concerning Malaysian STI policies, capabilities, initiatives, opportunities and aspirations by various stakeholders such as policy makers, government officials, academics, industry leaders, international partners and the general public. It is hoped that Science Outlook would catalyse the transformation of STI for wealth creation and societal well-being. 4

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... impactful science, technology and innovation (STI) for wealth creation and societal well-being ... Professor Datuk Dr Halimaton Hamdan FASc 5

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Malaysia’s first Science Outlook has been anchored by ASM, under the auspices of MOSTI. The objective is to conduct a study or review of Malaysian STI landscape and to test our preparedness to achieve STI targets as the country aspires to emerge as a developed economy. Six working groups, dedicated to six areas of STI, were formed, with a mix of representation from the industry, government, academia and professional circles. The working groups deliberated many discussions to identify and define the scope of their respective chapters, making it relevant and supported by evidence-based research or information. CONDUCT OF THE STUDY 196 14 4 6 References Steering Committee Members 22 3 5 1 Analysts Data Analysts International reviewers Writers Working Groups Chief Editor STI Governance (13 members) RDC (11 members) STI Talent (6 members) Energising Industries (6 members) STI Enculturation (10 members) Strategic International Alliance (5 members) AIM, CARIF, COMPASS ROSE, DOSM, EPU, IDEAS, IIUM, IKIM, ILMIA, INSTITUTE ENGINEERING MALAYSIA, MASTIC, MIGHT, MOE, MOSTI, MPC, MSA, MSPK – NSRC, NSC, PARLIAMENT, PEMANDU, PERDANA UNIVERSITY, PETROSAINS, SMECORP, STANDARDS MALAYSIA, TINDAKAN STRATEGI, UKM, UM, UMK, UNITEN, UPM, YSN-ASM 73 organisations and 14 individuals participated in the Surveys, Industry STI Perception Audits, Focus Group Discussions, Media Engagement Exercises, and Face-to-face Conversations 8 individuals conducted Surveys, Industry STI Perception Audits, Focus Group Discussions, Media Engagement Exercises, and Face-to-face Conversations 28 organisations provided key information and data 6

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The project is a result of a comprehensive stock-taking and engagement exercise, involving multiple stakeholders — from policy makers to regulatory authorities, from industry players to associations, from thought leaders to subject matter experts, from proponents of STI agenda to its beneficiaries. In the absence of a centralised repository on STI performance, issues, challenges and opportunities, it is important to reach out to various sources of information to include facts and figures, views and perspectives, past records, current trends and future prospects. The key objective has been to understand where we stand as a nation in terms of STI capabilities, capacity and aspirations. Towards establishing this and for undertaking this scientific project, ASM adopted a three-pronged approach for data collection and analysis: (1) Exploring national archives and knowledge centres to verify and establish various performance indicators in STI space; (2) Engaging with ministries, agencies, media, academicians, researchers, scientists, industry players, entrepreneurs, economists amongst others to secure quantitative and qualitative data on STI initiatives, programmes, policies and the overall ecosystem; and (3) Analysing local and global trends and best practices to address the gaps and arrive at recommendations. Such an extensive exercise was followed by inputs from international peers and subject matter experts for greater credence. Various members of the working groups assumed distinctive roles, guiding the process of conducting primary or secondary research / data collection, diagnostic analysis, benchmarking, inclusions and omissions, etc. Each working group was assigned a writer, who reported to the Chief Editor, responsible for documenting the evidences, information and interpretations under active direction and supervision of the working groups. 7

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ASM undertook the responsibility to have a bird’s eye view of the overall project efforts, to include multiple stakeholder engagement in the form of qualitative audits. The exercise involved qualitative in depth interviews or interactions with private sector industry players, the media, researchers, policy makers etc. The following methodologies were used to conduct baseline studies and to derive rich insights for individual chapters: 1 Face-to-face Conversations with Ministries, Regulatory Authorities, Agencies, Associations and Apex Institutions were organised to get an insider commentary on everything that drives STI policies, the measures taken to address some of the gaps and challenges, the outcomes and future expectations on STI development. Some of the key stakeholders include the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI), Ministry of Education (MOE), Malaysian Productivity Council, Malaysian Rubber Product Manufacturers Association, National Instruments Academy and Innovation Nucleus (NI-AIN), Halal Industry Development Corporation, Malaysian Palm Oil Council, National Innovation Agency Malaysia (AIM), SME Corp Malaysia (SME Corp) amongst others. It was important to identify perceptual or reality gaps between governing bodies, policy makers and implementers, and the beneficiaries or participation of various STI programmes and platforms. This approach helped to identify challenges between public and private institutions in meeting the common agenda of STI implementation. 2 An Industry STI Perception Audit was conducted using ‘Purposive Sampling’ technique involving one-to-one in-depth interviews with senior management, i.e. CEOs and leaders driving businesses and companies. In traditional research terms, this qualitative approach may not lend itself to quantifiable results or generalisability to the entire population as with mass surveys. However, the methodology provided rich insights and data relevant for further analysis. The companies were selected from various National Key Economic Areas (NKEA) or priority sectors of the economy. Through this approach, the working group has been able to establish STI trends for review and analysis. 8

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3 A Media Engagement Exercise was conducted to gain an outside perspective on the subject of STI and its practical implications on society and economy at large. All mainstream and language print, and electronic media were interviewed to get a balanced view. The exercise also helped to establish the relevance of Science for Society and Society for Science. 4 One Consultative Lab was organised to review Science Outlook and seek feedback from Young Scientists Network (YSN) Malaysia. More than 40 young scientists participated in the discussions during the YSN-ASM Colloquium 2014 and the feedback was incorporated to substantiate the key findings of Science Outlook. In addition, due diligence was undertaken to identify various primary and secondary data sources to include national resources and international reports. National resources included databases of reputable institutions such as Bank Negara Malaysia, MATRADE, Department of Statistics Malaysia, Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), MOSTI, ASM’s Mega Science Framework Study for Sustained National Development or the Mega Science Agenda: Malaysia 2050 amongst others. The international reports included the Global Competitiveness Reports from World Economic Forum, Global Innovation Index, IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2013 and other relevant reports published by OECD amongst others. References and citations from credible and institutionalised reports helped to support various inferences and for establishing correlations between various determinants and drivers of STI success. In analysing and interpreting the data and information, ASM maintained its evidence-based approach and worked closely with statisticians, scientists and economists to substantiate various findings. 1. For very specialised and scientific areas such as the Research, Development and Commercialisation (R,D&C), a holistic approach by way of the Innovation Systems Framework was used to diagnose the performance, which included assessment of key players and factors within the innovation system, including existing institutional arrangements, and R,D&C programmes established by the government [Figure (a)]. Such assessments included analysing national achievements, active players and effective programmes in R,D&C. Furthermore, anecdotal 9

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