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Sh.Demberel: Nation’s development speed will vary depending on how much knowledge is utilized

Trans. by B.DULGUUN

 Ph.D. and Sc.D Sh.Demberel, a representative of the Institute of Veterinary Scienceof the Mongolian State University of Agriculture (MSUA), received the title of Academician during the regular meeting of the Mongolian Academy of Science (MAS). He was awarded the title by Academician and President of MAS B.Enkhtuvshin just before Naadam Festival.

The following is an interview with Sc.D Sh.Demberel, who started out as a veterinarian, about his contributions to the development of Mongolia’s science sector.

Congratulations on receiving the Academician title, which is the highest recognition of individuals in the Mongolian science sector. In your biography, it was written that you started off as a veterinarian at a soum. Can you please speak about your start?

Thank you. At the time, when I was about to graduate, there was a system to make new experts work in productions in order to show them life in rural areas. Through this system, as soon as I graduated from the MSUA, I was assigned to the post of doctor and head of veterinary department in Galuut soum, Bayankhongor Province. In the registry of assets, I received assets as the head of the veterinary department. A green GAZ-69 Animal Ambulance worth 15,000 MNT was put into my account.

To me, who had no other assets aside from few books, the price of the vehicle was overwhelming as it was equivalent to 20 months of my salary. Including the diagnosis team, the department had 10 staff and their salary and fuel costs were issued under my name. It was a proper office with financing, transportation and a logo. The first aid service unit of the State Veterinary was powerful and wasn’t under the influence of the soum’s communion management. We were able to demand and complain about the department’s work requirements. This management and supply was possible thanks to one of the senior deans at the MSUA and state honored veterinarian G.Dashnyam who worked as the chief doctor of the State Veterinary at the time. During my post there, I got to learn about communication skills with people of different personalities in order to manage work. The soum’s communion had 103 thousand livestock and was sufficient to conduct plenty of observation and research. At the time, the head of the soum’s communion was a great leader named Jamts.

How have you come to do research work from being a soum veterinarian?

The history of me becoming a research officer from a soum veterinarian is quite interesting. At the time, an advertisement was put up in Unen newspaper notifying that research officers will be chosen through a competition. Shortly after, I took a leave from work and went to the city to participate in the examination. I scored high and started working in the veterinary sector of the Institute of Veterinary Science. Since then, I’ve been working here for 42 years. During this time, I got my postgraduate degrees and worked my way from the beginner’s research unit to the sector’s scientific management. I did research work for physiology and biology of growth and diseases in newborns.

In the last ten years, I mainly focused on developing probiotics for veterinary, expansion of production and consumption, and training research teams and personnel. Within this framework, I researched the composition of Mongolian traditional fermented mare’s milk, yogurt and camel drinks, and actively conducted works to cleanly extract bacteria for medical purposes. With its results, I led some ten projects for Doctor of Science, Doctor of Education, and a Master’s degrees.

Several bio products from over ten patents and product technical documentations, as well as some 30 standards that our research team developed at the last few years was put to production in the Probiotic Research and Production Center, which was established under our initiation. Staff cooperation of the agriculture sector, especially the support and encouragement of members and leading scientists in the veterinary sector was vital for providing conditions to work successfully in all stages, including research studies for diseases in livestock offsprings. I’m grateful to the current team who are continuing this work.

Research works are complicated and probably requires a lot of patience. What are the pros and cons of research works?

Research works are complicated and requires a lot of patience. Agricultural research work is completely based on experiments and comparison. Production technologies are done within specific periods. For instance, campaign for assisting livestock to deliver their young is done once a year. Therefore, related researches must be completed within that time limit. Cultivation is done in spring and harvesting in fall. Unless you wrap up preparation work, create technologies and do experiments and research within that period, you’ll lose time.

For veterinary research work, before production technology testing, several research models have to be developed in laboratory conditions after small animal trials. Repeated complex works requiring tolerance and endurance is implemented during processing, including comparison of domestic and foreign press data, evaluation of results, and consideration of things that may affect production testing. Every researcher knows that choosing the correct research model is the key to successful experiments. During the research process, it’s common to end up with unsuccessfully developed research models, theoretical assumptions that are inconsistent with practices, and failed trials after working on them for many days and months. However, you can create a beginning for the next successful research by taking note of all the details of failed experiments.

Since research works aren’t visible like construction works, there must be aspects that most don’t understand or appreciate. Can you talk about this?

From an outsider’s perspective, I must look like a crazy guy who mixes all sorts of things in glass tubes. Some think that it will not have any good outcome. But you can’t deny that it may become the beginning of a big successful project or a change. In the beginning of the twentieth century, a chemist asked his assistant about the work they do; the assistant answered that the scientist mixes all sorts of things in tubes and bottles all day and in the evening. The chemist gets rid of the assistant.

There are many difficulties and disadvantages of research work such as useful bacteria, which I extracted through many stages, evolving, changing or even dying during microbiological research processes. However, there are advantages such as implementing research models in production and consumption, getting new ideas from reviewing research results, developing researches of my own with the team, creating a new space for it in the respective science sector, and seeing its result.

As mentioned before, we initiated and commissioned the Probiotic Research and Production Center with a workshop under our institute, with the support of another governing body. This is also part of the initiations of our team’s leading scientists, but due to financial difficulties, it’s unable to operate at an adequate level.

Do you face difficulties in financing research materials and its implementation?

There’s scarcity in investments and financing opportunities. It’s important to increase financing in order to develop basic and applied research works and put scientific and technological achievements into use. The medical sector takes high priority in probiotic issues and cooperates with us but the Mongolian Veterinary Medical Association management rejects proposed projects. We’re being tolerant at the moment. Investment and financing that come through foreign relations are very important and it’s great to see young people advance their knowledge and get results from work that they conducted in partnership with internationally recognized scientists. It’s also great to combine quick operations of younger generations with the knowledge of experienced senior scientists. Operations with experience-based knowledge are the root of prosperity.

How many members does the MAS have and how many representatives of agricultural science are there?

Currently, the MAS has around 50 members. Four new members were chosen this year and six agricultural academicians are representing the veterinary sector. Under the supervision of the MAS, the Mongolian Academy of Agricultural Sciences was established in 2009. All science and technological matters for the sector are managed by the respective academy and its office, the Scientific Council of the MSUA.

Are the government and ministries able to reflect the large intellectual resource of scientists in policies?

Depending on how much knowledge you can utilize for production and how much demand you can acquire for intellectual products, the nation’s development speed will vary. There is a way to increase production and demand for intellectual products. To do this, we have to uphold the principle to do analysis for scientific and technological projects demanded by the ministry and agency, get results for the first stage of production, and then, announce tenders for implementation and acquire up to 50 percent of the total financing from the portfolio of the sector’s minister. This is consistent with the principle stating that results of in demand research work must be utilized. I have to acknowledge that our scientists and researchers are inactive in participating in policy and decision-making.

It is a fact that our scientists participated more actively in government policy development than academicians before. One way to utilize scientists’ capacity and intellectual resource is to have extensive involvement of scientists in professional councils, committees and working groups at the ministry and government agencies. I believe that this is a good opportunity to bind joint productive activities of experts and researchers at the ministry and government agencies.

 

Source: Unuudur news http://mongolnews.mn/w/53625

Short URL: http://ubpost.mongolnews.mn/?p=10935

Posted by on Jul 29 2014. Filed under Топ мэдээ. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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