The workshop titled, “Using Scientific Evidence for Maximizing Benefits of CPEC” was organized on 5th November 2019, at RIMMS. This one day workshop was organized by International Network for Government Science Advice (INGSA-Asia) jointly with NUST and National Academy of Young Scientists (NAYS). INGSA is a collaborative platform whose mission is to provide a forum for policymakers, practitioners, national academies and researchers to share their experience. This was for the first time in Pakistan, Asia chapter of INGSA organized this workshop to introduce its activities in Asia and to create awareness on the importance of using scientific evidence in policy formulation. Speakers from industry, academia and government sector were invited to give their insight on CPEC related potential effects on multiple factors and utilizing scientific evidence in policy formulation.
Dr. Hammad M. Cheema, HoD Research Institute for Microwave and Millimeter-Wave Studies, welcomed the participants and introduced the Asia Chapter of INGSA and its activities in the region. Chief Guest Dr. Asif Raza, Pro-Rector Academics NUST, said that; “CPEC started a few years ago, however it has gained momentum now and has positively affected Pakistan in many ways. We need to prepare ourselves and be mindful about its long term implications”. He also appreciated the efforts of Principal and HoD RIMMS for taking this initiative and organizing the first workshop on the issue. Dr. Ashfaque Hasan Khan, Principal/Dean School of Social Sciences, was one of the guest speakers for the workshop. He gave an overview of the available opportunities related to CPEC. Representative from Prime Minister’s Office, Dr. Altamash Janjua (Deputy Secretary, Institutional Reforms cell) spoke on the quantified performance management in the public sector of Pakistan. Another guest speaker Shakeel Ahmad Ramay (Executive Director Zalmi Foundation), who is a senior Political Economist, highlighted the importance of using Science in CPEC Economic Planning and execution during his talk. Dr. Salma Siddiqui (Head of Behavioral Science Dept, NUST) stated that with CPEC certain cultural and social conflicts may arise that need to be considered. Dr. Iffat Batool Naqvi (Assistant Professor MUET & INGSA Research Associate) was also among the invited speakers and she spoke about the first Industrial Cluster Policy of Pakistan. In the end, Dr. Irfan Khan (Professor Environmental Governance & Climate Change, IIUI) said that with the massive infrastructure implementation for CPEC, the environment is going to be adversely affected and these aspects should be considered in policy formulation.
Representatives from Government Sector, Sustainable Development Policy Institute, think tanks and universities attended the event.