IN PHOTO: Participants posed for a photo with DAP Senior VP Magdalena Mendoza, VP Imelda Caluen, and Director Jannis Montañez

The Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP), through its Center for Governance (CFG), implemented this year’s first face-to-face shuttle courseon “Smart Economies for Sustainable Cities and Communities” under the Adaptive Governance and Innovation for Local Executives (AGILE) Program last June 26 to 30 at Wynwood Hotel Manila.

DAP President and CEO, Atty. Engelbert C. Caronan Jr., welcomed the 16 local chief executives (LCEs) and key officials from various local government units (LGUs). In his remarks, he highlighted the role of each local government leader and mentioned that the transformative goal of the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2023 to 2028 is possible “…through the LCEs’ deeper awareness and understanding of the digital revolution.”

IN PHOTO: Senator Tolentino gave his speech while resource speakers delivered their presentations during the Smart Economies for Sustainable Cities and Communities course.

The shuttle course featured presentations from experts on best-practices in governance, smart and sustainable initiatives, and local economic development (LED)– with Atty. Reverie Pure Sapaen of the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA); Dr. Enrico C. Paringit of the Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD); Dr. Aser B. Javier of the Elkhorn Governance Consulting Co. and; Atty. Mark Anthony M. Gamboa of the University of the Philippines School of Urban and Regional Planning (UP SERP).

Likewise, representatives of the Iloilo province, and cities of Baliwag and Cagayan de Oro had a sharing session of the smart projects from their respective communities. The participants also joined a benchmarking activity in the City Government of Makati. 

Meanwhile, the Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP) President and Quirino Province Governor Dakila Carlo Cua and Del Carmen, Surigao Del Norte Mayor Alfredo M. Coro II discussed strategies on steering and driving LED. 

Gov. Cua stressed the importance of investing in local economies by saying that “when we invest in local economies, we create an environment conducive to entrepreneurship, job creation, and wealth generation,” while Mayor Coro II highlighted environmental conservation as a driver of economic activity by stating that “…being part of one of the most biodiverse countries of the world is our advantage. Previously, environmental management was not a popular political agenda, but now is a necessary program for both public and private organizations.

IN PHOTO (L to R clockwise): DAP President and CEO Atty. Caronan Jr., Sen. Tolentino, and DAP SVP Mendoza delivered their speeches during the Smart Economies for Sustainable Cities and Communities course.

DAP Senior Vice President for Programs (SVP) Magdalena L. Mendoza capped off the course and congratulated the participants’ completion of the five-day learning session. She also introduced Hon. Francis Tolentino, who emphasized the participants’ role in creating self-reliant and smart communities by mentioning that “the main purpose of AGILE is to develop the skills necessary for the LGUs to handle the challenges of constant and progressive change in their areas. This is to advance strategic and speedy responses of LGUs to address the needs of their constituents.”

The AGILE Program will offer more capability building interventions such as free webinars for local government leaders around the country. For more information, interested participants may reach out via email at or phone at (02) 8631-2135/ 8631-0921 local 166.