- Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Developing S&T Research in the Gulf States

A Belfer Center science and technology team traveled to Kuwait in March to take part in a collaborative workshop with the Kuwait Foundation for Advancement of Science (KFAS) on “Science and Technology in the GCC: Building Research Capacity and Vital Linkages.” The Center team included Venkatesh Narayanamurti (Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy), Laura Diaz Anadon (Research Associate in the Environment and Natural Resources Program at the Belfer Center and University Lecturer at the Department of Politics and International Studies, Cambridge University), Afreen Siddiqi (Visiting Scholar at the Belfer Center), and Rebecca Stern, former Research Fellow in the Center’s Energy Technology Innovation and Policy research group and graduate student at Harvard’s School for Engineering).

The key objectives for the workshop were to explore current challenges in conducting high-quality research in Kuwait and to discuss strategies for creating university-industry linkages. Among the participants from the Middle East were Amani Albedah (Director, Directorate of International Relations and Knowledge Management—KFAS), Khaled Mahdi (General Secretary, Supreme Council for Planning and Development), Salem Al-Hajraf (Executive Director, EBRC, Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research), and Kuwait University Professors Taher Al Sahhaf and Haitham Lababidi.

The Harvard team made a series of presentations summarizing key findings of their research studies funded by two successive grants from the Kuwait Program at Harvard Kennedy School. The team examined the trajectory of research in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states, emerging trends in national research capacity, international collaborations, and the nature and effectiveness of industry linkages with national universities. They also discussed key findings they have published and highlighted the importance of building research capacity in key areas relevant for national development and public welfare such as energy and environment. A series of presentations were also made by faculty and administrators from institutions in Kuwait. The workshop concluded with a panel discussion on connecting local education and research efforts to national development goals.

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation:

"Developing S&T Research in the Gulf States." Belfer Center Newsletter, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School (Summer 2017).


Laura Diaz Anadon