STAFF REPORT ISLAMABAD: Since Pakistan is seriously taking initiatives to put on track the science and technology research in order to meet progress targets amid the modern age, now this is the time to shift our focus, we should forget about impact factors and create impact – the key factor behind the success story of the western nations.

“Youth, scientists and researchers are plying an important role. Research impact is that impact must be demonstrable. It is not enough just to focus on activities and outputs that promote research impact, such as staging a conference or publishing a report. You must be able to provide evidence of research impact,” said Prof. Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Higher Education Commission (HEC) Executive Director while addressing the DAAD study visit function recently held for PINSAT students at the Preston University, Islamabad.

These were the 12 PINSAT (Preston Institute of Nano Science and Technology) students which have been selected by the DAAD, a German Academic Exchange Service, Islamabad, for a two-week study visit to Germany.

Dr. Mukhtar, who presided over the inaugural session of the event, said that now institutes would continue playing an active role for the socio-economic development of country.

He further explained that science and technology have a major impact on society, and their impact is growing rapidly. “By drastically changing our means of communication, the way we work, our housing, clothes, and food, our methods of transportation, and, indeed, even the length and quality of life itself, science has generated changes in the moral values and basic philosophies of mankind,” maintained the HEC Executive Director.

He said that DAAD has always been very supportive of the endeavours the HEC directed towards the promotion of higher education in Pakistan. Its contribution in this regard has always been significant, he asserted.

Past, present and future of research in the Information Society examines the role of research and the production of knowledge in the information society, with special emphasis on developing areas of the world, Dr. Mukhtar said.

The IT industry, he said, is one of the examples of the hi-tech industry with high returns. Hi tech industry is developed by hi-tech entrepreneurs who are having a vision on the latest market trends and have knowledge on future upcoming technologies. These companies had started with peanuts investments but now are thriving as the world largest companies. The main factors behind the success are the hi-tech talent combined with hi-risk investors.

Dr. Mukhtar lauded the dedicated efforts of Dr. Abdul Basit, Preston University chancellor, to promote the cause of higher education in the country. He advised the PINSAT students, selected by DAAD for the study tour, to take full advantage of the wonderful opportunity that has come their way to visit reputed German institutions of nanotechnology, and other high profile technical institutes and industries.

In his remarks, Dr. Basit appreciated Dr. Ursula Saarbeck, Director DAAD, for her efforts to arrange this very important study tour to Germany. He also briefly highlighted the achievements of the Preston University and lauded the HEC endeavours to raise the higher education standards in the country.

Dr. Ursula, on the occasion, explained that during their tour to Germany these students would get an opportunity to visit not only some of the leading institutes of nanotechnology but also a number of leading German industries to have understanding as well as application of research-based technology installed there.

On the occasion, PINSAT Executive Director Dr. N.M. Butt commended the important role being played by the DAAD in Pakistan for promoting the higher education in terms of training of students as well as teachers in Germany.

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