Featuring this year’s key findings from the Asian Development Bank’s statistical flagship publication, “Key Indicators for Asia and the Pacific,” the Division of Physical Sciences and Mathematics (DPSM) from the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), University of the Philippines Visayas (UPV) held a webinar last December 2, 2022, via Zoom at 9:30 in the morning.
This is the first of a series of webinars initiated by the Public Service Committee of DPSM related to the relevance of Physical Sciences and Mathematics in everyday living.
Representatives from ADB, Dr. Arturo Martinez Jr., Mr. Daniel Boller, Ms. Melissa Pascua, and Mr. Dennis Dizon, served as resource persons for the said webinar. Dr. Martinez is currently a statistician who specializes in poverty measurement theory and Sustainable Development Goals. Likewise, Mr. Boller is a statistician but specializes in Data Science. His work at ADB includes building statistical capacity in developing member economies as well as leveraging innovative data sources and methods for development. Ms. Pascua is a Senior Statistics Officer who has been working on the Key Indicators publication since she joined the bank, while Mr. Dizon is an economics and statistics specialist who is also part of the team behind ADB Key Indicators for Asia and the Pacific publication.
During the webinar, resource persons from ADB presented this year’s key findings from the bank’s publication, focusing on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the social mobility prospects of the most vulnerable population. It was stressed that Asia and the Pacific region already posted a marked slowdown in achieving many of its Sustainable Development Goals, delaying the point when it reaches its targets for reduced poverty, narrowed social inequality, and improved social mobility.
Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, these problems were further exacerbated, especially affecting socio-economically vulnerable people. In particular, social mobility among poorer populations became more challenging, making it more difficult for them to escape the cycle of disadvantage that they are already in. Although many economies in the region reported stronger economic growth in 2021, there were hints of divergent growth paths.
It showcased how social media posts may be tapped to support the analysis of SDGs using natural language processing (NLP). The session also covered the foundations of NLP technology, as well as specific case studies showcasing how NLP is utilized.
The webinar was attended by various institutions and lasted for almost two (2) hours. The committee also informed participants that an upcoming webinar related to the field of Physics will be held in January next year. (Mr. RB Jann Jamindang and Ms. Fretzy Jane Bares)