IN FOCUS: Nutrition and Inclusive Growth

The first 1,000 days from conception to two years old is a critical window for shaping the health of young children and the long-term health of society. When poor children at this stage of their lives experience chronic undernutrition, stunting manifests, meaning they grow to a height well below the standards for their age. Experts say the consequences are dire and long term. Nutritional issues such as stunting weaken their learning capabilities and dim their school performance, make them more vulnerable to chronic diseases in the future, and dent their economic productivity.

Despite its extensive number of nutrition and health intervention programs, the Philippines has much to do to substantially curb childhood stunting. According to a study by the Department of Science and Technology’s Food Nutrition Research Institute in 2015, one-third of children under five years of age or around 3.78 million Filipino children are affected by childhood stunting. More alarmingly, a study by the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) concluded that the country has had little progress in reducing stunting prevalence in the past two decades. According to PIDS Consultant Alejandro N. Herrin, author of the study, the issue is not the lack of national policies but more on the weak implementation of nutrition programs. He noted that targeting of beneficiaries, coordination with other agencies, management structures, logistics, and sustainability are among the critical issues that need to be addressed.

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Structural issues, such as problems in local mobilization, limited resources, and difficulties in organizational coordination, also impede the progress of these programs.
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Highlights

PIDS named one of the world`s best think tanks anew

For the fourth consecutive year, the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) has been recognized as among the world`s top think tanks.

In the 2015 Global Go To Think Tank Report and Policy Advice of the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) at the University of Pennsylvania, PIDS was included in the list of best think tanks in seven categories. More than 6,600 think tanks from 198 countries were assessed in this round.

PIDS remained the top social policy think tank in Southeast Asia and was ranked 37th among the top 100 in the world. Other think tanks from Southeast Asia that made it to this category (social policy) were Singapore`s Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (41st) and Institute for Policy Studies (53rd) and Malaysia`s Center for Public Policy Studies (66th). In 2014, PIDS also ranked 37th among 50 nominated think tanks in this category.

PIDS also maintained its rankings as among the top international development think tanks (70th out of 128) and among the top education policy think tanks (33rd out of 65).

Moreover, the Institute has been included in four new categories: best think tanks in Southeast Asia and the Pacific, best government-affiliated think tanks, and think tanks with the best external relations/public engagement program. The East Asian Development Network (EADN) Secretariat, which PIDS has been running since 2010, also made it to the list of best think tank networks. The EADN is a network of institutes and centers in developing countries of East Asia. It sponsors research and capacity-building activities for early career researchers.

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Featured Publications

THE MOTOR VEHICLE USER’S CHARGE: SOME ISSUES AND RECOMMENDATIONS

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Road funds coming from the Motor Vehicle User's Charge (MVUC) are funds reserved for specific programs or projects. The MVUC is collected by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) from motor vehicle owners. It is imposed through the registration fees of vehicles and payment of penalties for overloading. The collections are remitted to the Bureau of Treasury (BTr) under four special types of fund. Key findings from this study indicate the mismatch between the records of the LTO and the BTr on the MVUC monies. Moreso, two special funds"the Special ... || Read more >>


HOW TO IMPROVE SMALLHOLDERS' ACCESS TO FORMAL CREDIT: LESSONS FROM THE AGRARIAN PRODUCTION CREDIT PROGRAM

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The Agrarian Production Credit Program (APCP) is a credit program for smallholders designed and implemented by the Department of Agrarian Reform to provide smallholders with access to formal sources of credit. Under the APCP, documentary requirements for accessing credit have been streamlined to meet the level of financial education and literacy of agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs). This Policy Note reviews APCPs capacity to effectively address ARBs problem with accessing formal sources of credit. Some lessons have emerged. APCP has provided credit to ARBs and agrarian reform beneficiaries' organizations, but ... || Read more >>


COMPETITION FOR THE MARKET: A POLICY FRAMEWORK FOR IMPROVING BUS OPERATION ALONG EDSA

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The worsening traffic logjam along Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) is a serious problem in Metro Manila. It has inflicted hardship and suffering on commuters as well as tremendous costs in terms of losses in productivity and unnecessary fuel consumption. Various yet unsuccessful solutions have been tried. This Policy Note invites policymakers to consider applying "competition for the market" or competitive tendering/auctioning as a policy framework for rationalizing bus operation along EDSA. This framework proposes a way to effectively implement the bus consolidation strategy which can create more ... || Read more >>


DUTERTE MUST BE BOLD ON ECONOMIC POLICY

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Dr. Gilberto Llanto, president of PIDS, penned the banner article of this second issue of the Development Research News--his well-meaning advice to President-elect Rodrigo Duterte. A fundamental challenge for the incoming administration, according to Llanto, is to translate its eight-point economic agenda into rational, coherent, and well-studied economic policies. He also underscored the importance of clear policy statements, policy coherence, and careful study and sufficient empirical evidence as basis for any policy decision in order to achieve the administration's economic goals for the country. || Read more >>


RISKS, SHOCKS, BUILDING RESILIENCE: PHILIPPINES

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Building economic resilience takes center stage on this prepress version of the sixth issue of the PIDS Economic Policy Monitor (EPM). Due to overlapping shocks and risks of varied nature, there is a need to look beyond natural hazards and to acknowledge that the sources of risks are many and interconnected. Evidence points to the critical role of good policies in bolstering coping ability and in building resilient systems. In this line, this EPM presents a framework (Chapter 3) that underscores the significance of appropriate interventions by way of policies, programs, ... || Read more >>


GLOBAL VALUE CHAINS

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Global value chains (GVCs) play an important role in creating a more inclusive global economy. The interconnected networks of production and services are enabling paths for small and medium enterprises to expand and grow. In a world where the costs of communication and transportation have been significantly reduced by advances in technologies, policymakers must understand how they can help local firms and industries capture and benefit from increased GVC participation. GVC success stories in various Philippine industries--tobacco, services, and electronics, among others--have evidently contributed to the country's recent positive growth ... || Read more >>


ASSESSMENT OF THE DSWD SEA-K STRATEGY

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This study assesses the effectiveness of the strategy and the complementary interventions of the Sustainable Livelihood Program`s Self-Employment Assistance Kaunlaran (SLP SEA-K). The SLP SEA-K uses a microcredit strategy to provide credit access to the poor, improve the ability of the group to borrow, and enable it to engage in income-generating activities. Microcredit services are generally believed to have a positive socioeconomic impact; however, the success of projects may depend largely on the management of the program. The authors found out that the government lacks the capacity to handle ... || Read more >>


PHILIPPINE JOURNAL OF DEVELOPMENT SPECIAL VOLUME ON HEALTH

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The Aquino Health Agenda of 2010 articulates succinctly the Philippine health sector's aim for universal health coverage. The agenda has three thrusts: rapid expansion of enrollment and benefit delivery using subsidies for the poorest families, improved access to quality hospitals and health-care facilities, and attainment of health-related Millennium Development Goals through additional effort and resources targeted to the most critical areas in the country. Years after the launch of the agenda, the Department of Health collaborated with key institutions to implement the Health Systems Research Management (HSRM) Project, with the Philippine ... || Read more >>



Press Releases

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POLICY FORUM ON SMES SLATED IN DAVAO CITY

State think tank Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) and the University of Southeastern Philippines (USeP) are collaborating in a policy forum on the theme "Harnessing the Capacity of SMEs as Engines of Growth" to be held on August 10 at the USeP campus in Davao City. In 2015, Assistant City Administrator Atty. Tristan Dwight Domingo recognized the huge role that micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME) play in Davao Ciys economic growth. They account for 95 percent of the 35,393 registered businesses in the city, which translates to 20 percent of its PHP 210... || Read more >>


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ROAD USERS' TAX FUND UNDERUTILIZED, PIDS STUDY SAYS

A study by state think tank Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) revealed that the funds collected through the motor vehicle users charge (MVUC), popularly known as road users' tax, is underutilized due to the lack of a definitive operating procedure system on how to identify and prioritize projects. The authors of the study--PIDS Consultants Sheilah Napalang and Pia May Agatep, PIDS Senior Research Fellow Adoracion Navarro, and Research Associate Keith Detros--underscored that the processes of identification, approval, and implementation of proposed projects are problematic. "Project identification does not follow ... || Read more >>


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EADN HOLDS ANNUAL RESEARCH CONFERENCE

The East Asian Development Network (EADN) met early this month for the annual research conference to review the progress of the studies being conducted by the network's current research grantees. The network was commended by keynote speaker Rolando Tungpalan, deputy director-general for Investment Programming at the National Economic and Development Authority, for "its continuing efforts to promote research capacity building and policy networking in the region". The critical role played by evidence-based research in governance and public leadership, especially in the process of making public policies, is too often understated. ... || Read more >>


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UPGRADING FACILITIES CAN BOOST QUALITY AND USE OF HEALTH SERVICES -- PIDS

Building more health facilities and investing in medical equipment allow government hospitals and infirmaries to provide quality health services to more people. In a study conducted by state think tank Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) evaluating the Health Facilities Enhancement Program (HFEP) of the government, it was noted that hospitals and infirmaries that received funding from the government to upgrade their facilities showed higher volume of services than those that did not. The HFEP, which is being implemented by the Department of Health, is a major undertaking under the ... || Read more >>


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TARGETING OF BENEFICIARIES OF EMPLOYMENT FACILITATION PROGRAM UNDER 4PS MUST BE IMPROVED, STUDY SAYS

A recent impact evaluation study by state think Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) said the mechanism for choosing beneficiaries of the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP), a component of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), must be improved to improve gains from the program. According to PIDS Vice President Marife Ballesteros and Senior Research Fellow Aniceto Orbeta, the employment facilitation program has been well-received by its target participants. It is also regarded by many participants as a critical conduit for their employment. However, they noted that aside from the limitations ... || Read more >>



EVENTS CALENDAR


September 22, 2016 09:00 AM
2016 Second Annual Public Policy Conference on Risks, Shocks, Building Resilience

Marco Polo Ortigas Hotel, Ortigas Center, Pasig City


September 08, 2016 09:00 AM
PIDS-World Bank Workshop on "Increasing Philippine SMEs' Participation in Global Value Chains"

World Bank Philippines, Taguig City


September 05, 2016 10:30 AM
Press Conference on the 14th Development Policy Research Month

PIA Auditorium, 3/F Media Center Building, Visayas Ave., Quezon City


September 01, 2016 12:00 PM
Regional Press Conference on the 14th Development Policy Research Month

Father Saturnino Urios University (FSUU), Butuan City


September 01, 2016 08:30 AM
PIDS-MinDA 2nd Mindanao Policy Forum

Father Saturnino Urios University (FSUU), Butuan City




Watch Dr. Gilbert Llanto’s guesting on NET 25’s Aprub Program


DATABASE UPDATES


July 2016
Based on the preliminary data, the countrys gross international reserves (GIR) rose to US$83.97 billion as of end of June.

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June 2016
The countrys gross international reserves (GIR) reached US$83.51 billion as of end of May.

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May 2016
The countrys year-on-year headline inflation rate remained at 1.1 percent in April.

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