First of all need to create trust of the business

First of all need to create trust of the business

In the context that many affiliated institutes of private corporations are offering many attractive invitations and have recruited many names in domestic and foreign research circles, there are still scientists looking to Vietnam - Korea of Science and Technology (VKIST). Two "rookies" of VKIST had an interview with Science and Development Newspaper about difficulties and advantages in their work.

Dr. Phương Thiện Thương (left) and Dr. Nguyễn Duy Tài. Image: Bảo Như

Why did you choose VKIST among a series of institutes and schools in Vietnam today?

Dr. Phuong Thien Thuong: After the period of studying and researching in abroad, I have returned to the country for more than 10 years, but have not found a unit to create opportunities for me to continue implementing some applied researches that I have made at the Biotechnology Institute, under the KIST Institute of Korea.

I would like to go back to work at VKIST because I found that the institute has a working mechanism that can create opportunities for me to continue my research direction.

Dr. Nguyen Duy Tai: I have studied and worked abroad for 15 years, returned and accepted to work at VKIST because it was consistent with my research orientation so far. In Belgium, I did researches to solve problems for companies with IT, such as building transport routes, IoT in fisheries, irrigation ... I did not look for public corporations because in their research institutes, most of them only solve their own problems. In VKIST, researchers can still come up with more pervasive information technology solutions, especially can support SME companies without research funding.

What are the points of interest in VKIST and VKIST's opportunities to develop?

Dr. Phuong Thien Thuong: Personally I found the orientation of introducing technologies for the industrial sector of VKIST is very necessary, because in the past, research in Vietnam is often not associated with two things: one is specific output that whether the market needs or not, other one is the basis for implementation - the business itself. I myself, in the past, had carried out a research project to apply the active ingredient extract from citrus bark to make medicine for Hanoi Department of Science and Technology. It is a technology that is clearly the market needed, because domestic manufacturers are having to import that material to produce products. I kept accepting orders and did not know that there was no extraction plant in Vietnam, even if the technology was introduced, it could not be applied. This is a lesson about having no basis for deployment.

Dr. Nguyen Duy Tai: I think there are a lot of problems that are posed from Enterprises, because have no business develops without innovation and Technology. Even if it's not good at foreign technology, it's good to bring it into the country. For example, IT can be applied to manage both production lines, optimize raw materials for wood production, but foreign technology is unlikely to solve the problem of Vietnam. Because wood products in foreign countries are not as sophisticated as in Vietnam, but mainly just closing tables, chairs, cabinets. Therefore, we must study with specific characteristics in Vietnam.

I believe that VKIST will never run out of work, but need much more models like VKIST, because each institute will have different customer groups, different types of businesses. For example, in IT, I observed abroad and found that, in general, many of the business models of their countries have encountered many problems ahead and have resolved, and we have got that. I believe that no problem [in IT] only appears in Vietnam, but has actually been considered, solved somewhere, the problem is whether or not I know it. Therefore, it is necessary to find out the reality in Vietnam and find out the solutions. For example, when I was in Belgium, I researched and proposed a traffic flow solution for all vehicles, from ships and trucks to ports, obviously it is also a tool that Vietnam is need very much.

It seems that until now, the culture of integration between enterprises and researchers has not much yet, many companies have technology needs but they cannot say exactly the needs or obstacles their stage. So how will VKIST do to capture and give solution for the problem of enterprise?

Dr. Phuong Thien Thuong: The VKIST scientists will have to actively contact and join hands with businesses to understand the difficulties and their need for scientific and technological innovation to help them operate more effectively. At first, we could not go all the way, but we only went to some businesses to solve some typical problems. For example, one of the first VKIST contracts that I participated in was to help improve the effectiveness of herbal products for Traphaco - one of the economic sectors that is strong but we have not fully utilized.

Dr. Nguyen Duy Tai: How can both businesses and institutes believe in each other, persuade each other to go along a path that may have failed? All are in transparency, professional and serious working attitude. VKIST has just started, has not proved its ability, it will initially be difficult to link, but when it proves its ability, by some specific product projects, businesses will look to VKIST.

At the beginning, because the Institute is building the headquarters, where will you work?

Dr. Phuong Thien Thuong: VKIST will open a laboratory in Korea and I will go there to work, and Mr. Tai will use the Lab available at Hoa Lac High tech park.

In our country, the development of a contract research institute with the industrial sector is still new, according to you expect, what difficulties and advantages will there be?

Dr. Phuong Thien Thuong: In terms of advantages, VKIST is determined by the Government Leaders and the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) that create favorable conditions in terms of policies, operating budget for the first time. VKIST also received help from the Korean side on science and technology and the experience of the KIST Institute (Korea), which was evaluated to be ranked 6th in the innovative research institutes worldwide in several recent years. They help VKIST a lot during the time that we haven't infrastructure and human resource yet.

As for the difficulties, I think the first problem is that have not many domestic enterprises really have the demand for science and technology and consider as a key factor to determine the operational efficiency. Only a few domestic enterprises have invested themselves to find technology solutions for development through domestic research. The second difficulty, VKIST is a pioneer in this field so it has not much experience. Whichever kind of failure and must build culture to accept defeat, and must "detect stones across the river" to succeed.

Dr. Nguyen Duy Tai: I just added a little more, about opportunities and human resources, VKIST can provide information, contact and attract scientific researchers who are overseas Vietnamese want to repatriate.

Thank you and hope that VKIST will make important contributions to Vietnam!

Dr. Phuong Thien Thuong, Head of Biotechnology Department: Previously worked at Chosun University, Korea, Setsunan University, Japan and Institute of Medicinal Materials (Ministry of Health), with 15 years of experience in research and develop products (medicine, functional foods, cosmetics), have a lot of experience and skills in the research of pharmaceuticals, natural compounds chemistry, folk medicine, pharmacological effects of folk medicinal plants, Research and development of drugs - products from medicinal herbs.

Dr. Nguyen Duy Tai, Head of IT Department: As a Software Architect at Trasys International - NRB Group in Belgium, served as a consultant team leader at EC European Commission - DIGIT General Computer Department. He has experience building projects such as electronic public procurement, aimed at digitizing EC's public procurement cycle, to simplify manual interactions, save time and encourage businesses in EU participates in public bidding for the European Union Community, builds solutions to help banks deal with disputed transactions for both buyers and sellers. 

  • 19/08/2019 02:22