Thursday, April 27, 2006


Cultivating Innovative Thinking Among the Kadazandusuns
Allan Dumbong

The world is moving forward and converging to become a small village. The science and technology is the order of the day. Many human needs either to be used for impetus for development or to solve world worst problems like AIDS, SARS, bird flu, cancer, can only be done through innovative thinking and continuous research. Therefore it is important for the

Kadazandusun scholars to get involve in research and initiative innovative and creative thinking. The Kadazandusuns are known for their intellectual capacity, as many rural poor have managed to breakthrough to middle class just because they have attained good education in college or universities, locally or overseas. We should make innovative thinking be a culture among the Kadazandusuns for the development of intellectual property to generate new wealth for the country.

History had proven that countries without natural resources, like Japan and Finland, could become developed after enhancing human resources for their economic development. The future of our country cannot depend solely on natural resources like rubber, oil palm or crude oil and natural gas. It should also be driven human capital which we want to strengthen for our social and economic development. The innovations must also be followed with the protection of intellectual property rights (IPR). In developing the country's intellectual property, the Kadazandusuns should give special attention to Sabah’s biodiversity, and conduct research and development, and protect their research findings and innovation under the IPR laws.It is said that almost 40 per cent of the world's economy depended on biodiversity and Sabah is fortunate to be blessed with rich biological resources like the flora and fauna. Unfortunately, the knowledge and information on flora and fauna is still at a low level and so efforts to monitor biological resources will not be easy.We hope that the Kadazandusun scholars in universities who have obtained doctorate and masters degrees and gained vast research experience in various fields would be able to make good of their expertise.

They should also create a "backward linkage" with the local community, especially in the rural areas, to plant herbs which they could use for their research.The government's commitment and incentives for people to managing and protecting the rights of intellectual properties can also help in encouraging more investments. This is specially given the incentives and attention under the 9th Malaysia Plan. The Kadazandusun graduates should go through the Plan, and read between the lines, to get to know what lies ahead of us insofar as the innovation, IPR, biotechnology etc are concern.

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