“Maejo University to confer honorary doctorate on SEARCA director” : Dr. Gil Saguiguit
Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit, Jr. is the current Director of the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA), an intergovernment organization mandated by 11 member countries in Southeast Asia to address agricultural and rural development concerns, issues, and problems affecting the region.
Before assuming the post of SEARCA Director, Dr. Saguiguit served as SEARCA’s Deputy Director for Administration from July 2002 to July 2009. He also served as SEARCA’s Research and Development Manager from 1998 to 2002 wherein he led and managed SEARCA’s Research and Development (R&D) programs, projects, and activities in the Philippines and Southeast Asia. Several projects which he led and managed during his term as the R & D Manager received awards. Among them were the Data Management for Rural Development and Food Security Project which garnered “Best Linkage Project” from the Canadian International Development Agency, and the Ned Agro- Industrial Development Project which earned SEARCA the “Most Outstanding NGO Partner” award from the Department of Agrarian Reform of the Philippine Government. He also managed SEARCA’s Consulting Department which was ranked among the top ten consulting firms in the Philippines doing business with ADB in the year 2000. On an intermittent basis, Dr Saguiguit has led or participated in international consulting assignments focused mostly on Southeast Asia.
Dr. Saguiguit holds a doctorate degree in Rural Economics obtained in 1980 from the Universite de Montpellier I, France. He has the distinction of being the first Filipino to complete the program in the said university. He completed his Masters degree in Agricultural Economics and Bachelor of Science in Agriculture at the University of the Philippines in Los Baños (UPLB) in 1977 and 1974, respectively.
His main fields of interest, expertise, and experience include agricultural and rural development program implementation, fund generation and financial management, agricultural extension, participatory and community-based approaches, and multidisciplinary research.
Dr. Saguiguit, Jr. has written and co-authored a number of publications on community-based natural resource management, research management, North-South collaborative research, and topics related to agriculture and rural development.
He has received various prestigious scholarships including the UC-Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program Scholarship in 2001; Harvard Project 928-B Agribusiness Training Scholarship in 1974; Netherlands Government Scholarship (Masters), 1974-1977; and a French Government Scholarship (Doctorate), 1977-1980. In 1983, Dr. Saguiguit, Jr. reached the final round of selection for the World Bank’s Young Professionals Program.
Recently, the French Government conferred on Dr. Saguiguit the rank of Chevalier de l’Ordre du Mérite Agricole (Knight of the Order of Agricultural Merit) in recognition of his commitment to the development of strong research cooperation in agriculture between France and the Philippines. The distinction was bestowed on him through a decree of the Minister of Agriculture, Food, Fisheries, Rural Affairs and Regional Development of the Republic of France signed by Minister Bruno Le Maire on 31 January 2011.
He is the only son and namesake of the late Dr. Gil F. Saguiguit Sr., a renowned Filipino agricultural education expert, institution-builder, academician, and one of the founding fathers of SEARCA.