KUALA LUMPUR, July 5, 2012 - The Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (MOHE) allocated research funds totaling RM741 million under the Tenth Malaysia Plan (RMK-10) comprising of four main grant schemes to accelerate the research efforts of the country’s higher education institutions.
The four schemes are Fundamental Research Grant Scheme (FRGS), Exploratory Research Grant Scheme (ERGS), Long-Term Research Grant Scheme (LRGS) and Prototype Research Grant Scheme (PRGS).
For 2012, a total of RM170.47 million is allocated for the four main grant schemes and Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) emerged as one of the highest recipients with approximately RM30 million for the LRGS (top-down & bottom-up).
For LRGS (top-down), the two main areas of USM, namely Energy and Water Security which is led by Prof. Ir. Dr. Mohd Nordin Adlan, received a total of RM4.59 million while the Advanced Manufacturing and Value Added field which is led by Prof. Dr. Zainal Arifin Mohd Ishak, received a total of RM7.48 million.
For LRGS (bottom-up), a total of RM9.29 million is allocated to Hajj Research which is led by Professor Dr. Ahamad Tajuddin Khader meanwhile RM7.75 million is allocated to the field of Local Wisdom which is led by the USM Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Dato' Omar Osman.
The Higher Education Minister, Dato' Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin said that the ministry hopes that with these funds, the local public and private higher education institutions can improve the research development to produce new high-impact theory and discoveries that can be commercialised.
He said that it is hoped that the higher education institutions can assist in terms of revenue generation for the community and the nation.
"A developed country is a country that invests to explore and to seek new knowledge and there is no exception to Malaysia as well. We need to cultivate an extraordinary love for knowledge and research discoveries.
"We also need to find ways to inculcate research culture as a true culture and no longer just a job and profession,'' he said this in his speech at the research grant presentation ceremony here yesterday.
He added that the university must find ways to generate revenue through research-based business approach and for this purpose, the ministry recommended that the higher education institutions to create two special positions namely the Chief Innovation and Technology Officer and the Chief Investment Officer.
He said that it aims to help the university to add value to all the research findings and innovations that carried out in the ivory tower which is considered as priceless intellectual treasures.
"Let the Professors continue to focus on the knowledge and research, while leaving the development and commercialisation of the research output to other individuals who are skillful in this field,'' he said.
Meanwhile, also present at the ceremony was the Secretary General of the Ministry of Higher Education, Datuk AB Rahim Md Noor who also witnessed the presentation of funds to successful recipients through FRGS (RM54.9 million), ERGS (RM42.1 million), and PRGS (RM14.8 million).