QF’s annual forum aims at ‘research for all’
DOHA QATAR Foundation’s second Annual Research Forum (ARF), dedicated to globalisation of research by promoting a scientific culture in the region and across the world, is scheduled to open on Sunday at the Qatar National Convention Centre.
The three-day conference will focus on the globalisation and democratisation of scientific research. The plenary sessions of the 2011 Annual Research Forum will be centred on the themes ‘globalisation in research’ and ‘entrepreneurship in science and technology’ with parallel sessions falling into five tracks: biomedicine, energy, environment, computing, arts and humanities, social sciences and Islamic studies research.
The forum will showcase the latest research being conducted in and for Qatar that can also benefit developing countries.
There will also be new opportunities for students with doubling of the number of student awards introduced this year.
This year’s theme takes its inspiration from a speech delivered by Her Highness Sheikha Moza at the first Annual Research Forum in December 2010, where she noted, “It has become acceptable to talk about globalisation of education, economy, culture, information and technology. The time has come for globalisation of research to be recognised as well.” Regarding the 2011 theme, Qatar Foundation’s Vice-President for Research, Dr Abdelali Haoudi, commented, “Scientific research has the potential to solve some of the society’s most pressing issues, not only through the technologies and scientific advances it produces, but also through the human capabilities it develops and strengthens in the process. Qatar Foundation is eager to lead the movement towards a globalisation and democratisation of research because it will allow developing communities to unlock their human potential in the fields of science and technology.” “This year’s forum has some new and exciting developments- we have significantly expanded opportunities for student presentations and networking, as a reflection of Qatar Foundation’s commitment to building research capacity and promoting a culture of research in Qatar and the region,” said Dr Dirar Khoury, director of Institutional Research for Qatar Foundation.
“We have also launched a separate track for environmental research in view of the growing interest in this field by the scientific community,” Dr Khoury added.
There is 35 percent increase in abstracts submitted for review for the second edition of the event. As many as 353 research abstracts, competing for exposure at the second ARF, were received for expert review and presentation, covering topics ranging from water desalination processes to the impact of autism on families in Qatar. Sixtyseven of the abstracts submitted were from students. The abstracts submitted are on biomedicine, computing, energy, environment, arts, humanities, Islamic studies and social sciences – the main tracks for this year’s forum. The abstracts are currently under review by the abstract review committee which is made up of wellestablished and experienced reviewers in their fields, and transparency in the review process is a focus this year.
The Annual Research Forum will also serve as a platform for integrating research efforts around Qatar into a clear national agenda, encouraging greater collaboration among researchers and building research capacity among Qatar’s youth population.
Young researchers will have the opportunity to interact with renowned international scientists and researchers through panel discussions, workshop sessions and abstract presentations. By highlighting leading research efforts across various disciplines, the forum will serve as a venue for intellectual exchange and collaboration between researchers and scientists from developed and developing countries.
Additional sessions will explore the possibility of public-private partnerships, connecting research with the development of new products and technologies, measuring research and development outcomes and research capacity building.
ARF 2011 will bring together Nobel laureates, international policymakers, students, scientists, industry leaders and top academic and research institutions in Doha for the three-day conference.
The event will conclude on November 22 with the distribution of awards given in recognition of research excellence in each subject.
In the drive to increase support for student research, the number of awards for students has been doubled this year. Winning presentations will be selected by an expert panel of Nobel laureates, prominent scientists and industry leaders.