Amir visits HBKU Research Complex
February 20 2020 09:54 PM
His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani interacts with an official during his visit to
His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani interacts with an official during his visit to Qatar Foundation’s Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) Research Complex

*His Highness briefed on national research, development and innovation strategy

His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani on Thursday reviewed the Qatar Research, Development and Innovation Strategy (QRDI 2030) that has been developed by the Qatar Research, Development and Innovation (QRDI) Council in alignment with Qatar National Vision 2030.

During his visit to Qatar Foundation’s Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) Research Complex, the Amir received a presentation on QRDI 2030 and its seven transformational elements related to innovation and enterprise system, foundation research system, talent, funding, governance, regulatory environment, and integrated information systems, in addition to the executive implementation plan for the strategy, which aligns with Qatar’s Second National Development Strategy 2018-2022 (NDS-2).

The Amir also toured the HBKU Research Complex, receiving an insight into the work and achievements of the research institutes based there in the fields of energy and environment, biomedicine, cybersecurity, computing, and Artificial Intelligence, as well as the current and future plans for the complex.

He was accompanied by HE the Prime Minister and Interior Minister Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz al-Thani, HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Defence Affairs Dr Khalid bin Mohamed al-Attiyah, who is also the QRDI Council chair, Qatar Foundation vice chairperson and CEO HE Sheikha Hind bint Hamad al-Thani and other dignitaries.

According to a statement from the QRDI Council, Qatar National Vision 2030 outlined the aspirations towards sustainable prosperity for Qatar, and the NDS-2 identified the need to focus on knowledge and innovation as key factors in economic diversification. NDS-2 granted QF the mandate to develop a national research, development, and innovation strategy. To build national consensus, QF established the QRDI Council.

The QRDI Council has built on this national framework to develop a national strategy that takes a holistic view of Qatar’s research, development, and innovation (RDI) ecosystem. QRDI 2030 outlines a roadmap towards building a vibrant and integrated national system during this decade and connecting Qatar's research, development and innovation efforts to its national imperatives.

It adopts the best way to build and strengthen the role of the private sector through leading research and development institutions in the country. It also seeks to strengthen communication with international institutions involved in research, development and innovation, and create promising careers for future generations of national talent.

During the visit on Thursday, the Amir discussed with the officials the proposed next steps for implementing QRDI 2030 in order to build a new national legacy and start the next chapter in Qatar’s success story, following the country’s successes of its LNG industry and the sports platform leading up to the FIFA World Cup 2022. RDI will enable Qatar to create new industries, opportunities, and capabilities for more growth and economic diversification in the country's path towards realising Qatar National Vision 2030.

QRDI 2030’s seven transformational elements would collectively bring about an integrated RDI ecosystem that drives business R&D to increase efficiency, growth, and expansion. In addition to building public sector capacities to adopt innovative policies and improve the efficiency of infrastructure and public services, QRDI 2030 aims to align research and academic institutes with national imperatives and challenges and utilise the opportunities available to gain a competitive edge.

QRDI 2030 identifies national priority areas in which RDI can have a locally significant impact and make a globally recognised contribution through the foundational research system and the innovation and enterprise system. The national priority areas were identified as energy, health, resource sustainability, society, and digital technology.

QRDI 2030 aims to increase Qatar’s gross domestic product through business R&D activities. Large local enterprises would adopt strategies of growth and expansion through supporting development and innovation centers, incentivising multinational companies to open up R&D centres in Qatar, and expanding innovative start-ups.

The strategy also aims to build a broad talent base to work in the business sector, create high-skilled jobs, and develop a highly flexible regulatory environment that promotes business growth and attracts talent and foreign investment.

“We were honuored by the presence of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani. We had the opportunity to brief him on the efforts of Qatar Research, Development and Innovation Council towards developing a comprehensive national strategy that establishes for the next chapter of Qatar’s success story. His Highness has always been generous in providing guidance on the principles and pillars that support all facets of the research, development and innovation ecosystem,” HE Dr al-Attiyah said.

"Qatar Research, Development, and Innovation Strategy 2030 represents an ideal opportunity to drive growth as a national economic engine for Qatar post World Cup 2022. With economic diversification as a main outcome, the strategy sets out to promote the growth of various economic sectors, as well as expanding RDI-based projects and investments, enabling a wider range of local enterprises to achieve global competitiveness, enhancing the ability of government agencies to innovate in public services”

QRDI Council was established in 2018 as a new milestone in Qatar’s efforts to further its national research, development and innovation agenda by mobilising a cross-section of local and global leadership from government, academia and industry.

During his tour of the HBKU Research Complex, the Amir met senior research figures and researchers from Qatar Biomedical Research Institute (QBRI), Qatar Computing Research Institute (QCRI), and Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute (Qeeri) – all of which are part of HBKU, a QF member - who are making scientific breakthroughs and developing innovative solutions in areas of national priority for Qatar.

The Amir learned about Qeeri’s work to address the national, regional, and global impact of climate change and in improving air quality; how QBRI’s research aims to improve the prevention, treatment, and diagnosis of diseases that affect the people of Qatar and the region, such as diabetes and cancer; and the frontline role that QCRI is playing in enhancing Qatar’s cybersecurity and preparing the nation for an Artificial Intelligence-driven future, as well as its focus on Arabic language technologies and data analytics.

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