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          Universidad de Sta. Isabel’s concerted commitment to scholarly endeavors, research, and innovation has long been proven to be vital to its vision of attaining excellence in its programs and services. Needless to say, the Research Agenda plays a vital role to set focus and direction on research and development efforts that will address the needs not only of the organization’s stakeholders but also to be of service to its community. Thus, the creation of the University Research Agenda 2022-2026 required a careful consultative process to make sure that: (i) It is linked to the institution's strategic planning process, and (ii) aligned with national and international demands.

As can be seen in the conceptual framework of the USI University Research Agenda 2022-2026, it was conceptualized in keeping with the University’s overarching strategic target to achieve “National and Global Distinction in all academic Programs through Vincentian Formation, Curricular and Green Innovation”. The revised research agenda identifies present gaps in knowledge and practice, as well as research issues that have the potential to have a substantial impact on the field of education, health, environment, and governance.

The Research and International Linkages Office (Executive Director and staff) together with its Technical Review Board started by consolidating pertinent documents that will lead to determining research gaps and aligning key research areas to national and international standards.

                The following documents were reviewed for crafting this research agenda:

  1. University Strategic Plan 2021-2026 

  2. Missionary Challenges and Commitments

  3. Laudato Si

  4. United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs)

  5. AMBISYON Natin 2040

  6. Harmonized National Research and Development Agenda

  7. National Unified Health Research Agenda (2017-2022)

  8. National Higher Education Research Agenda 2 (NHERA 2)

  9. National Commission for Culture and the Arts 12-Point Research Agenda 

  10. Basic Education Research Agenda 

  11. National Tourism Development Plan 

  12. Department of Social Welfare and Development Research and Evaluation Agenda (2019-2022

  13. Regional R and D Agenda 2018-2022

  14. Bikol Regional Development Plan

                   The process includes a discussion of analyzing research capabilities and strengths and research performance in the past five years. Through a coding and categorization process, the group initially looked into possible research themes guided by the intended targets stated in the  USI Strategic Plan, Missionary Challenges and Commitments, LAUDATO Si, UNSDG’s, and Ambisyon Natin 2040. These documents were prioritized because it spells out the mission and vision of the University as a Catholic Vincentian Education. In addition, these documents describe the Philippines ’ long-term vision in meeting international standards. All the other documents were also reviewed keeping in mind what the University can do given its resources and potential which is geared towards the integral development of the stakeholders and improvement of the quality of life of Bikolanos.

                After establishing the University Research themes, general research questions were formulated to further set different perspectives on how to meet the target. These general research questions are created to help researchers and other stakeholders view the significance of the research themes. Further, these general research questions became a guide to establishing the priority research topics for the University. Research topics were further culled out from the set of documents presented earlier.

The draft of the document was presented and discussed with both academic and non-academic divisions for further critiquing and approval. This is to ensure that the University themes, general research questions, and priority research topics are in-place. Further revisions were presented and approved by the community.    


The University Research Agenda


      The University Research Agenda 2022-2026 calls for research undertakings and innovation from all divisions of the University, not just the Academic Division. This is to ensure that the University’s efforts to innovate will be research-based and data-driven. As can be seen in the framework, the University research themes are:

  1. Catholic Vincentian Identity and Global Sense of Mission & Service 

  2. Standardization of Vincentian Educational Practices

  3. Transformative Learning and Services through Leveraging ICT

  4. Innovations on Health and Social Advocacy & Environmental Stewardship Advancement of Leadership and Governance


THEME 1. Catholic Vincentian Identity, Global Sense of Mission and Service


             This research theme focuses on topics to target our mission as a Catholic institution. As the premiere Catholic Vincentian University in the Bikol Region serving more than 150 years, it is imperative to revisit and evaluate our ‘raison de’etre and our cultural heritage. There is a need to look into how we can strengthen the faith of the youth in a world that promotes “extreme consumerism”. The following general research questions and research topics may be explored under this research theme:

THEME 2. Innovations on Health and Social Advocacy & Environmental Stewardship


         This specific research theme was included because of Universidad de Sta. Isabel’s deliberate commitment to the call of the Holy Father Francis on the “Care for the Common Home”. This is to enhance our services along with health education, community extension services, and linkages. The research topics in this theme may include but are not limited to the following general research questions:

THEME 3. Standardization of Vincentian Educational Practices


           This theme caters to possible research topics in teaching and learning according to the field of expertise that will help the University target its goal of standardizing educational practices for national and global distinction. This research theme was conceptualized based on the research demands stated in the National Higher Education Research Agenda and the Basic Education Research Agenda. There is a need to conduct researches that will look into whether we are meeting the targets of OBE and conduct researches on innovative educational practices that can address the specific societal needs at the same time

from future mission-driven leaders.  The following general research questions and research topics can guide researchers to conceptualize research projects under this theme.

THEME 4. Advancement of Leadership and Governance


        This theme was included to promote researches that will focus on promoting work efficiency and accountability among stakeholders. Advancement of leadership and governance would mean advocating higher expectations in leadership learning due to societal critiques of the effectiveness of these efforts, and the need to define a better future through more effective and inclusive leadership. The following general research questions and research topics may arise when conceptualizing research undertakings for this theme.

THEME 5: Transformative Learning & Services and Leveraging ICT


       This theme was purposely included because of the digital transformation in the pandemic and the post-pandemic era. There is a need to document and disseminate best practices to harness ICT for education with a particular focus on digital innovations.  More importantly, there is a necessity to use ICT to its maximum advantage for learning and services. The following questions and research topics may be explored for this theme.

       This university research agenda is done to help researchers and its intended beneficiaries to visualize the link between research and the needs of the community, and its intended outcomes. An increase in the number of research enthusiasts, research output (publications), researchers’ engagement with potential end-users, and contributions to policy and practice will be crucial markers of its success.

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