Assalaamu’alaikum wbt. And Warm Greetings,
Malaysia is undergoing a myriad of transformations in research and innovation in higher education. Globalization has resulted in increased mobility, collaboration and revolutionized the way we teach and learn. Institutions of higher learning (IHL) in Malaysia are not only required to provide quality education and be financially sustainable but also to conduct world class research which would result in societal impact from their research output. Thus, researchers are increasingly expected to undertake multi-disciplinary research which should produce better impact and contribute to the nation’s productivity.
Research and innovation is expected to play a major role in shaping Malaysia’s economic wellbeing in this century. The ability for Malaysia to break out of the middle income trap depends very much on the success of our nation in becoming an innovation-led economy. This is by no means an easy task as research has taken a backseat for many years due to the lack of sustainable funds that are available for research.
In line with the demands of Malaysia’s aspiration to be an innovation-led economy, the University of Malaya (UM) is also undergoing a transformation in many areas. As Malaysia’s first university, UM needs to be a major global player in providing quality education as well as doing innovative and impactful research. Towards this end, a conducive environment to further develop a robust research and innovation culture among researchers has been provided. The Kompleks Pengurusan Penyelidikan & Inovasi was built with the intention of providing a centralised research management facility for researchers within and outside the campus. Units managing research, innovation and commercialization are placed together under one roof to provide the best management facility to advance research and innovation.
What is the future for UM research? There is no way forward other than to enhance what we have been doing now and also to think out-of-the-box not only to generate new knowledge but also provide the much needed impact from the research activities that are being financed by the public funds.
Hence, developmental research to solve real society’s issues must work hand-in-hand with the fundamental and newly emerging research. Returns on Research Investment (RORI) or perhaps Return on Values (RoV) must be a permanent guiding principle for the research agenda in the future.
As Malaysia’s premier Research University, UM will continue to lead in research activities and create research impact that will benefit the society. Whilst not forsaking fundamental research work, other schemes like the Interdisciplinary Impact Oriented Research Grant (IIRG) and Industry Driven Research Grant Scheme (IDRG) have been introduced to our researchers. It is hope then with these research programs, UM will realize its research tagline which is “UM Research: Transforming Knowledge, Industries and Lives”