KFAS presents its new Strategic Plan (2017-2021) before a focus group comprising the public and private sectors, professional societies and Non-profit organizations.
The Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences shared its strategic plan for the next five years (2017-2021) with its partners from the Kuwaiti shareholding companies, the civil society, and the research community, to raise the level of interaction. The interactive sessions witnessed dynamic discussions, rich debates and exchange of ideas and full consideration of the recommendations presented.
In five-day meetings, KFAS Director General, Dr. Adnan Ahmad Shihab El-din, along with a number of senior managers at KFAS expounded on the role of the Foundation as a catalyst of science, technology and innovation in Kuwait.
Dr. Shihab-El-din further explained the new developments in KFAS strategic plans (2017-2021) and the fiscal details pertaining to investment of KFAS’ funds and funds received from the shareholding companies. He also focused on policies of how to allocate annual budgets to serve various activities.
To gauge the effectiveness of the Foundation’s work and its positive impact on the scientific community and on Kuwait in general, a survey-based questions were put forward. Dr. Shihab El-din said: “all recommendations presented by the participants will be seriously examined and pursued with full attention by KFAS. Furthermore, KFAS will coordinate with the relevant individuals, institutions or unions and shall take necessary measures to implement the recommendations that suit KFAS’ mission, objectives, and its new strategy."
He added, “The new strategic plan includes cooperation venues with national scientific institutions to raise government expenditure for scientific research in Kuwait from 0.3% to 1% of the GDP by 2020 and to accelerate the establishment of a “National Research Council” to identify national priorities of the State of Kuwait in respect to scientific research and funding of research.
Dr. Shihab El-din expounded on the new strategy adopted by the Board of Directors, chaired by His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Jaber Al Sabah, which seeks to improve efficiency of grant procedures and scientific research funding, strengthen research proposal writing and presentation skills and research publishing, and promote scientific research in collaboration with prestigious scientific institutions.
He noted that the strategy aims at strengthening cooperation with a number of Kuwaiti government and private institutions to serve Kuwait's priorities in the field of scientific research and development, and to raise the level of public awareness with respect to science and teaching of science, promote the dissemination of scientific culture through various means such as electronic applications, support and entice the youth, and increase the proportion of support provided by KFAS to the private sector through special programs promoting innovation.
Dr. Shihab El-din explained that: "the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences is keen to galvanize its role as a major catalyst in development and capacity-building in research and technology in accordance with the State of Kuwait Development Plan. This approach has resulted in securing approvals to establish five talent academies for gifted students in cooperation with the Ministry of education. The Foundation also adopted the energy efficiency and energy generation pilot project using photovoltaics in Al-Zahra and Adaylia cooperatives in addition to 150 homes, which prompted the Supreme Council for Planning and Development to approve a wide range of similar projects to refit 1500 homes with solar PV systems.
The Foundation looks to expand the project to cover approximately 200,000 homes by 2030, thus achieve photovoltaics compound capacity of nearly 2 GWe, a figure that fulfills 50% of H.H the Amir’s vision of reaching the target of 15% of the electricity generation from renewable energy by 2030.
Dr. Shihab El-din added, “as the last five-year strategic plan (2012-2016) completed its cycle with remarkable efficiency and achievements, the new strategic plan was drafted based on: the outcome of an independent global assessment made on its programs and scientific centers during 2015 and 2016; various interviews with relevant prominent figures; as well as on a study conducted by an independent international scientific agency on research in Kuwait between 2003 and 2013 to identify priority areas of research and interventions.
It is noteworthy to mention that all attendees commended the efforts made by the Foundation to present the strategic plan and avail the opportunity for interaction with the audience. Representatives of many of the participating shareholding companies expressed their willingness to voluntarily increase their contribution to the Foundation after they were made aware of the role of the Foundation in stimulating scientific progress in Kuwait through presenting the evidence of the impact of implementation of KFAS’ programs and activities.