Dow plans R&D center at KAUST
Thuwal (Saudi Arabia), September 23, 2009
King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) and Dow Chemical Company have announced plans to establish the Dow Middle East research and development center at the university's research park and innovation cluster.
The proposed R&D center, to be jointly designed by the partners, is expected to be completed by the end of 2010.
Initial research at the Dow Middle East R&D Center at KAUST will focus on water and water treatment technologies, eventually expanding its scope to oil and gas, processes research and development, and infrastructure materials. All of these activities are aligned with existing KAUST Research Centers, said a top Dow Chemical official.
“By establishing the Dow Middle East R&D Center at KAUST, Dow has taken the lead among a group of distinguished multinational companies to partner with the leading representation of King Abdullah’s vision for KAUST,” said Andrew Liveris, chairman and chief executive officer, The Dow Chemical Company.
“This is a memorable and promising day in Dow’s history, as we strive to invest for growth in fast-paced and high-potential economies like that of Saudi Arabia, and as we strive to ensure that our growth is sustainable and that our contributions to the world help address global challenges and provide for everyday, human needs. We stand by our partner in the endeavor to translate Saudi Arabia’s aspirations into reality,” Liveris observed.
KAUST is a graduate-level institution and the realization of the vision of King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, to promote the advancement of science and technology and act as a catalyst in transforming Saudi Arabia into a knowledge-based economy.
Dow’s plans for an R&D Center at KAUST come on the heels of Dow’s June announcement that it would become a Founding Member of the University’s Industrial Collaboration Program (KICP), which aims to enrich the research experience at the University while promoting economic development in Saudi Arabia.
Dow’s plans include an initial annual minimum funding commitment of $1,000,000 to support multi-year R&D sponsored projects and initiatives catering to the mutual objectives of Dow and KAUST students and faculty, Liveris stated.
The R&D Center will also financially and intellectually support a number of dynamic programs and initiatives, including funding thesis research and semi-annual technology research challenges, as well as the Dow Talent Program to develop and train Saudi talent.
The initial research conducted at the Dow Middle East R&D Center at KAUST will focus on water treatment technologies, showing that the partners are working toward generating discoveries that are acutely relevant to sustainable development in the surrounding communities and economy.
Prof Choon Fong Shih, president of KAUST, said: 'The Dow Middle East R&D Center at KAUST represents a promising commitment on Dow’s part to the vision of King Abdullah to have KAUST act as a catalyst in transforming Saudi Arabia into a knowledge economy by directly integrating research produced at the University into our economy.'
We are pleased to have Dow, a 112 years old world leader in the field of science and technology, as a partner in realizing this great vision. The establishment of the Dow Middle East R&D Center at KAUST is a significant event by itself, but we are also excited by Dow’s commitment to support research within KAUST’s walls, as well as by the prospect of having KAUST graduates hired by Dow, here in Saudi Arabia.”
The signing of this significant agreement between Dow and KAUST on the day of KAUST’s inauguration reinforces the pride that all Saudis take in the contribution that KAUST is making to the Kingdom, its economic development and the advancement of science and technology both nationally and globally, he added.-TradeArabia New