Qatar gives science top priority as it announces new research strategy

Energy and the Environment, IT, Health, Social Sciences and the Arts will be the focus of Qatar’s new ambitious National Research Strategy (QNRS), the country has announced during a major conference that draws to a close in Doha today. 

The document communicates Qatar’s commitment to furthering scientific research locally and through a network of international collaborators, officials explained at three-day joint Qatar Foundation Annual Research Forum and Arab Expatriate Scientists Network Symposium.

Faisal Alsuwaidi, President of Research and Development at Qatar Foundation, told the conference that the QNRS is all part of Qatar’s 2030 vision, and its intention to move towards a knowledge-based economy.

“Our vision is for Qatar to be an international centre for research and development, excellence and innovation. Our mission within the national research strategy is to develop the capabilities of our people and institutions, and to build and maintain a competitive and diversified economy which will benefit not only Qatar but also the region and the larger world, since science has no borders.”

Meanwhile, the Qatar Computing Research Institute (QCRI), a member of Qatar Foundation, announced a partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) at the conference.

The deal is for a seven-year joint research initiative which will see QCRI and world-renowned MIT scientists sharing research projects. 

One further piece of scientific news was announced at the meeting:

The Qatar National Cancer Research Strategy was launched by world famous surgeon Lord Ara Darzi, the head of Imperial College London’s Institute of Global Health Innovation and Chair of the Qatar National Cancer Research Committee.

Lord Darzi, who was born in Iraq, is a member of the UK’s House of Lords, and a former health minister in the British government. 

The strategy, which aims to improve survival rates and quality of life, recommends that more Qatari scientists are trained to become cancer researchers, and calls for more investment in cancer research. 

Qatar also plans to host an International Cancer Research Conference, according to Lord Darzi.

Thoughts? 

Credit: Photo by SLU Madrid Campus

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