The Bangladesh Gazette
GOVERNMENT OF THE PEOPLES
REPUBLIC OF BANGLADESH
Dhaka, the 24th February, 1986
No. STD-S-XIII.Sc.P(16)/86/410. - The National Science
and Technology Policy of the Government of the People's Republic of
Bangladesh is published herewith for general information.
1.1 Science has been described as "the means of understanding the natural environment", while technology is "the means of controlling and managing it". Hence Science and Technology together cover the gathering and generation of information about the material world and the application of that information for the welfare of mankind.
1.2 The advanced countries of the world are where they are today primarily because of their ability to use science and technology as effective tools for achieving their national objectives. These countries have changed the life-styles of their peoples through the cultivation and application of science and technology. The developing countries have fallen behind primarily because of their backwardness in this respect.
1.3 It is now generally realized that the inherent strength of a nation lies in the skills of its people which can be acquired and enhanced through the practice of science and technology in every field. The promotion of scientific knowledge and development of technology, through their increasing application, create the necessary conditions for socio-economic uplift of a country. Technological progress is thus the crucial determinant in the realization of the twin objectives of eradication of poverty and acceleration of socio-economic development
1.4 Bangladesh has been struggling to meet the basic needs of its people, viz., food, clothing, shelter, health, education and the like and to substantially raise the living standards throughout the country. In order to achieve these goals and to keep up with the rest of the world, Bangladesh, too, must harness science and technology to reach its national goals. It is only through the use of S & T as effective instruments of change that a happy future for the people of Bangladesh can be ensured.
1.5 Scientific research and development is a vast field in which various Ministries, Government and Semi-Government agencies, universities and private enterprises participate. Coordination of scientific research in the research institutions and universities is extremely important. Owing to a low base a poor infrastructure, we have been able to undertake research work in only relatively small number of areas. In these areas also, progress of research a development activities has not been very satisfactory so far. There were other constraints including the lack of a rational, coherent and comprehensive Nation Science and Technology Policy to guide decision-making on the quantum and distribution of resources for scientific and technological research and the lack of a clear perception of the very special nature of R & D institutions and the management. The limitation of resources, shortage of skilled manpower in in many areas, inadequate research facilities and skill development programmes, lack of coordination among scientific organizations, outmoded science curricula in the educational institutions, dependence on foreign technology, brain drain and emigration of trained manpower and poor social consciousness of the role of science and technology in national development-all of these factors have conspired to keep us backward.
1.6 Bangladesh now recognizes that given the limitations of her factor endowments, the mounting problems of providing for the basic needs of the people, ensuring a reasonable standard of living and accelerating the pace of economic development cannot be tackled without the help of science and technology. It is, therefore, essential to provide high national priority to scientific and technological considerations in the over-all development strategy of the country.
1.7 With this end in view, a National Science and Technology Policy was
formulated in 1980. However, it consisted mostly of broad objectives
without definite guiding principles and did not form a part of the
over-all national development plan. In the absence of any effective
mechanism, no concerted effort could be made even for partial
implementation of the policy.
2. AIMS AND STRATEGY
2.1 In recognition of the fact that the formulation of a comprehensive and coherent national science and technology policy, designed to contribute to the achievement of the country's development objectives, is necessary for the effective application of science and technology for development, the Government of Bangladesh considers it appropriate to formulate a new National Science and Technology Policy. The Policy is designed to fulfil the foolowing primary aims:
(a) To attain scientific and technological
competence and self-reliance, to help increase production and
(b) To be in consonance with the socio-economic, cultural, educational, agricultural and industrial policies of the nation.
(c) To contribute to the world-wide pool of scientific and technological knowledge.
(d) To seek out and recognize high talents in various areas of science and technology.
(e) To strengthen cooperation in science and
technology between developed and developing countries, and particularly
(f) To provide guideline for institutional
arrangements or rearrangements in the R&D structure (including
2.2 With a view to ensuring that policy formulation in science and technology and their cultivation and application in various sectors will proceed in a coordinated manner, the Government of Bangladesh constituted on 16 May, 1983, a centrally institutionalized mechanism called the National Committee on Science and Technology (NCST) to perform the following functions:
(a) Recommend national policies on Science and Technology.
(b) Recommend priorities to specific research
programmes, evaluate the quality and effectiveness of research
(c) Suggest measures for coordination of scientific research and development activities.
(d) Recommend approval to research plans and programmes.
(e) Such other matters as may be considered relevant by the Government.
2.3 The NCST, headed by the President of the People's Republic of
Bangladesh, has a Vice-Chairman, six concerned Ministers, eight concerned
Secretaries and seven prominent scientists/technologists as members. The
composition of the NCST, with its terms of reference, is shown in Annexure-A.
2.4 There is also an Executive Committee of the NCST to oversee the
implementation of its directives and decisions. The NCST may be assisted
by sub-Committees, Technical Committees, Advisory Panels, Expert Panels
and Consultants, as required.
3. MAJOR ELEMENTS OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY POLICY
Solution of the problems of the national economy calls for multidisciplinary application of science and technology. Given the limitation of resources, an integrated approach is essential for evolving a comprehensive and coherent national science and technology policy which will serve, inter alia, the following purposes:
3.1 Organize and coordinate all Research and
Development work concerning science and technology in the
In view of this, the role of the NCST as the central coordinating agency assumes critical importance. The NCST would advise the Government on selected areas of research and development which would help realize the stated objective meant to accelerate economic recovery and then assign these areas of research and development to the specific agencies best equipped to carry them to a successful completion and ensure their high performance. The NCST will also evolve a mechanism for establishing linkages of R&D in horizontally amongst themselves and vertically with the Ministries deal S&T activities.
In view of the above, it is considered appropriate that the NCST also serve the following functions.
(a) Recommend measures for technology assessment, development, adaptation, adoption and diffusion in the country.
(b) Suggest measures to
integrate a Science and Technology Plan with the Development Plans
(c) Introduce effective
institutional arrangements in the various organs of the Government to help
promote and monitor
(d) Secure funds and allocate them to the various R& D institution the light of national development priorities.
(e) Recommend to Government
on science and technology related policies in the areas of taxation,
import, export and
(h) Promote regional and
international cooperation in science and technology on bilateral and
An Engineering Research Council may, therefore, be created in line with the Medical Research Council . Its prime objectives will be to :
3.2 Careful selection of the problems facing the country in each vital sector, where solutions are likely to have a significant impact on the economic and socio-cultural development of the country:
This will be achieved by formulating science and technology plans commensurate with sectoral priorities arising form national development objectives, establishing targets for each science and technology sector, critically evaluating the resources required and effectively monitoring the performance of each sector. Special effort must be made for research and development in the following sectors:
Some of the indicative thrust areas identified in these sectors. on
which R & D is needed and which are vital for solution of immediate
problems of life and living of the largest number of our people, are shown
in Annexure 'B'
3.3 Promotion of research and strengthening the competence and capability of research institutions including the universities:
Nurture of national talent must be ensured by substantial improvement in the facilities of the research institutions including the universities through the provision of:
(1) Support Services : This will be done
(b) Establishment of a central workshop facility for effective maintenance
and repair of scientific instruments
(d) Development of computer capabilities and provision for time- sharing
networks of computer systems.
(3) Review Mechanism for accountability in R & D organizations :
In goal-oriented research and development project, individual scientists; groups and teams, operational units and institutes entrusted with the work should be accountable for their total output within a time frame. The accountability factor should be a built-in element in the R & D mechanism.
While in an undeveloped economy like ours goal-oriented research will
continue to be emphasized, certain proportion of basic research must also
be carried out in the universities, R & D organizations and other
enterprises because it provides solid foundation for applied research and
development. This type of research will be carried out by those with
originality and innovativeness of a high order. Successful accomplishment
of basis research automatically results in the creation of manpower imbued
with great intellectual quality, self-confidence and the ability to find
new and innovative solutions to problems.
Such institutions or centres will provide for training facilities at the highest level and undertake major projects relevant to national development needs. With a few exceptions, establishment of new scientific research institution/laboratories/Centres of Excellence will be avoided, Attention will be given to judicious utilization of available resources for developing the existing institutions such as Universities, BAEC, BCSIR, BIRDEM, etc. into centres excellence. However, in view of the great potential of bio-technology for the developing countries, a National Institute will be established to carry out research on bio-technology: Other such centres of excellence would be in Computers and Lasers, Such 'centres of excellence' will be set up in different parts of the country with due regard to the availability of high grade manpower
3.5 Improvement of standard of scientific knowledge at all levels from the school to the university:
3.6 Training of personnel and specialised scientific and technological staff in the research institutions/laboratories and industrial establishments :
Besides building up professionals , technicians, managers and skilled workers through the creation of training facilities in the country, high quality manpower needed to provide leadership and maintain the continuity of the build-up process has to be created. This will be done in the country and also abroad in co-operation with advanced countries on the basis of a 'sister institution' concept under national and international support.
3.7 Ensure suitable environment for scientific
and technological research:
3.8 Creation of scientific awareness among the broad masses of people through popularization of science and technology and encouraging innovative activities, especially among the younger generation:
This will be achieved through-
3.9 Establishment of national capability for development of indigenous technology and attainment of a national capacity for the assessment, selection, acquisition, adoption and adaptation of foreign technology:
It is recognized that the Technology Policy for the country will cut across many policy areas and development sectors. The basic objective of the Technology Policy will be the development of indigenous technology and efficient assimilation of imported technology.
Its aim will, inter alia, be to:
In order to fulfil the broad aims and objectives to the Technology Policy out-lined above it is envisaged to strengthen and establish relevant institutions and co-ordinance activities of the different organizations in respect of technology transfer. With this strategy in view the present Institute of Appropriate Technology at BUET will be strengthened and given responsibility for policy research on matters related to technology assessment, forecasting, evaluation, etc. The Institute will act in close cooperation with and, among other things, may receive research assignment from a Technology Transfer Study Centre, to be instituted as a think tank for the NCST.
With further development of a policy regime for technology transfer and
institution of appropriate legal, fiscal and financial instruments for
imported technology, a National Centre for Technology Development and
Transfer may be instituted in due course to serve as a focal point to
provide information, training, consultancy and extension services in
respect of technology transfer.
3.10 Creation of Centralized facilities for collection and dissemination of scientific information and research findings:
A strong information base is a prerequisite for an S&T plan with self-reliance as one of its principal objectives. To facilitate rapid documentation and dissemination of indigenously collected information and that obtained from outside sources, a well organized and institutionalized system is required which would conform to the international standards and be available within the resource constraints of the country. In Bangladesh, scientific and technical informations are handled at the moment by several organizations which are collecting, collating, cataloguing and storing information in different fields.
For effective functioning, a three-tier national system is proposed with the following three levels of operation:
A. The Central Documentation Centre: This would be headed by a highly qualified and experienced expert supported by a number of subject-matter specialists. It will have the following base facilities:
The Bangladesh National Scientific and Technical Documentation Centre (BANSDOC), now a unit of the BCSIR, will be developed as the central documentation centre directly under the Science and Technology Division. The National Science Library will form a part of the Central Documentation Centre.
B. Four sub-groups situated in convenient institutions to deal with the following subject areas:
C. Institutional Facilities: All the scientific institutes (research and educational) would continue to have their library facilities and subject-matter specialization. These libraries will perform the function of collecting and documenting basic local information in their respective areas and feed the same to the respective sub-groups and ultimately to the central storage for permanent documentation and international exchange.
3.11 Ensure adequate fund for the STR sector for development of infrastructure for R&D activities:
In recognition of the fact that science and technology are essential tools for the socio-economic uplift of a nation, the industrially advanced countries spend large resources on scientific and technological activity. Typically, they spend between 2 and 3 percent of the total value of their goods and services i.e. their Gross National Product (GNP) on research and Development (R&D). Several times this amount is additionally spent in converting the results of the R&D into a socially valued artefact which is then made readily available to the potential buyer and user.
By contrast, the expenditure on R&D in our country does not constitute more than 0.3% of the GNP whereas the international standard is a minimum of 1% of GNP of the developing countries. It has been found from experience that R&D funding below a level of 1% of GNP does not create any significant impact on economic development.
Special efforts should, therefore, be made to ensure adequate resources for the effective implementation of science and Technology Policies. Apportionment of at least 1% of GNP will be targeted for R&D and the target will be reached as soon as possible by phasewise increases in the allocation in this sector. For this, appropriate financial mechanism will be established and the functions of which would include:
Besides, a centralized fund for R&D activities shall be created out of a contribution of 1% of the total budget of all productive sectors. This contribution will be compulsory for both public and private sector industries and such contribution will be tax-free. The NCST may allocate funds to various scientific organizations and distribute them through the Science and Technology Division which would also monitor and evaluate the impact of such expenditure. The administration of the programmes will, however, remain with the respective Ministries.
3.12 Ensure bilateral, sub-regional, regional and international scientific and technical collaboration:
Bangladesh is totally committed to acquiring scientific and technological capability to be able to reach her socio-economic goals as soon as possible. Concerted efforts will be made to foster scientific and technical co-operation with developed and developing countries to build up a sound science and technology base in the country. In this respect sub-regional, regional and international collaborative arrangements with agencies like South Asian Association for Regional co-operation (SAARC), Commonwealth Science Council(CSC), Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Islamic Foundation for Science, Technology and Development (IFSTAD), UN Centre for Science and Technology for Development (UNCSTD), etc. and also other bilateral arrangements will be given due importance.
4. SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PLAN
The priorities for the scientific and technological development in the country will be identified on the basis of the above considerations by the NCST for the formulation of appropriate Science and Technology Action Plan. In drawing up the S & T plan, the NCST will endeavor to combine sectoral approaches keeping in view the totality of the nation's scientific and technological needs.
The actual planning and programming should be undertaken by panels of
scientists and technologists belonging not only to the research
laboratories and universities alone but also to design, engineering and
manufacturing units, natural resources survey agencies and extension
organizations. This will be done in collaboration with economists,
administrators, planners and other professional groups. It should be
ensured that the scientific and technological projects are derived from
committed development programmes. In short, the S & T plan will be an
interactive and collaborative process.
5. A LOOK AHEAD
5.1 The success of the science and Technology Policy and the speed with which the various facets of the policy are implemented depend on an efficient monitoring, review and guidance by the NCST. For the implementation of the policy the NCST will spell out guidelines in detail for Ministries, agencies of the Government as well as for industries and entrepreneurs dealing with science and technology.
5.2 The formulation of Science and Technology Policy, the preparation
of an S & T Plan, the provision of adequate financial resources and
the effective implementation of the Plan can secure the necessary
conditions for proper use of science and technology geared to fulfil
national goals. In themselves, these are not sufficient. Implementation of
the policies will require a commitment on the part of the Government to
undertake the much needed organizational and managerial reforms not only
in agencies and institutions which generate science and technology but
also in all public and private enterprises which use science and
technology. In fact, the effectiveness of Science and Technology Policy
would depend upon the strength of the linkage between the political and
scientific technological systems.
NATIONAL COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE
A. National Committee on Science and Technology was formed, vide
Cabinet sion Resolution No. N-Com-I/83/211-Committee, dated 16 May, 1983
with the following composition and terms of reference:
B. Terms of reference of the NCST
(a) Recommend national policies on Science and Technology.
(b) Recommend priorities to specific research programmes, evaluate the quality and effectiveness of research programmes undertaken by various agencies and the extent to which results are put to actual use.
(c) Suggest measures for co-ordination of Scientific research and development activities.
(d) Recommend approval to research plans and programmes.
(e) Such other matters as may be considered relevant by the Government.
C. Composition of Executive Committee of the NCST
(Note: The term of office of the nominated scientist
members has been extended for two years up to 8th June, 1987, vide
No. STD-S-XIII-Sc. P(1)/83, dated 22nd October 1985 )
INDICATIVE THRUST AREAS IN WHICH R&D IS NEEDED
(1) Agriculture, Land, Livestock, Poultry, Forestry and Fisheries:
Besides rice and wheat, greater attention will be paid to development
of high yielding varieties of pulses, edible oil, sugar cane, jute,
cotton, etc. Emphasis will be given on the integrated pest management and
farming system. Extensive research work will be undertaken on the effect
of micronutrients on fertilizer uptake, on livestock, poultry, forestry
and fisheries development. Attention will also be given to the production
of vegetables and fruits.
Special attention will be paid to averting recurring floods, studying
soil-water management and optimizing level of irrigation water. Provision
will also be made for land reclamation and deltaic studies.
(3) Health and Family Planning :
R&D work will be undertaken to improve efficiency and, if necessary, initiate adoption of new methods in the provision of health facilities and family planning programmes.
R&D efforts will be directed to attain self-reliance in the execution of convention commercial projects (e.g. power generation, transmission and distribution, development of gas fields, etc.) so that we can not only design these ourselves but increase the efficiency of their performance.
Special attention will be paid to the development of renewable sources of energy and widespread development of small plants to meet rural energy needs maintaining ecological balance. Adaptive research will be carried out for devising viable means of using solar and wind energy and biomass.
Among others, particulars attention will be given to economic
production of basic materials for intermediate and wage goods as well as
raw materials and capital goods for small scale industries, steel and its
alloys, basis chemicals and pharmaceuticals for both humans and animals,
plastics, PVC and synthetic fibres, machine tools and metallurgy.
Provision for carrying out in-house research and enhancing design
development capabilities in large as well as small scale industries will
(6) Small Scale and Rural Industries:
Efforts will be made for improvement in technologies and design for
traditional cottage and other small scale industries, engineering
industries to support agricultural development as well as for processing
agricultural products, components of large industries, consumer goods,
Efforts will be made for improvement in quality, economy in construction of roads and railways and efficiency in use of road vehicles, water crafts and other means of transportation.
Special efforts will be made for development of information
transmission media like telephone, telegraph, radio, TV, etc.
(9) Housing and Public Works:
Technological improvement will be made for realizing low cost housing
ensuring durability and maximizing use of local materials, etc.
(10) Scientific and Technological Education including provision of interaction and coordination among educational institutions, R&D organizations and industries:
In order to encourage industrial exploitation of research results obtained in educational institutions and R&D organizations and facilitate solution of problems faced in the production sectors, efforts will be made for appropriate modernization of scientific and technological education system and formulation of requisite curriculum to ensure effective interaction and coordination among educational institutions, R&D organizations and industries.
Besides the above, the following would figure in the priority projects:
© Copyright and
Fair Use . SDNP Bangladesh holds the ©
copyright to its publications and web pages but