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"KFAS" Concludes the Executive Education Program "Innovation Challenge" in collaboration with the Royal College of Arts

May 28, 2017

News Detail

After four months of relentless efforts and intensive workshops, the Innovation Challenge program, launched last February with the participation of a number of private sector companies, was concluded. The Program is carried out as a joint collaborative program between the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences and one of the world's leading academic institutions in the field of designing and motivating innovation in the private sector, the Executive Education Center of the Royal College of Art In London.

The participating teams presented before their senior managers and a number of senior managers at the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS), with the results of their projects implemented during the four-month program. The projects presented provided innovative solutions and services to meet  challenges faced by their companies and exhibited the skills the teams acquired during the Innovation Challenge program this year.

The participants succeeded in developing new services which included: mobile applications for corporate banking, solutions to enhance postal and personal banking services, and other solutions for the automation of retail banking services. The teams were able to create ways to improve marketing of services by analyzing the pattern  of inputs in the databases, offer solutions for digital signature usage in the banking sector, and enhance sustainability of companies through renewable energy. Moreover, projects dealt with improving productivity and the work environment. New real estate investment approaches were presented as well as applicable recommendations to improve communication between teachers, students and parents by using smart phone applications.

Mr. Khaled Al-Mishaan, Deputy Director General and CEO of ALARGAN International Real Estate Company, said: "The presentations and results were very satisfactory and we intend to introduce solutions developed by ALARGAN Group to the market by the end of this year."

Mr. Salah Al-Flaij, CEO of National Bank of Kuwait, said: "The uniqueness of the innovation challenge program has motivated NBK's extensive involvement in it because it stimulates the innovation potentials of the participants, which lead to improving quality of our business and services at NBK and avail positive impacts on our operations.  

"We strongly believe in the importance and implications of the executive education program and its role in enhancing expertise of management and leadership, especially through science, technology and innovation, which avail a wealth of knowledge and skills," said Dr. Adnan Shehab El-din, Director General of the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences. He added, "The program has presented participants with a unique chance of a lifetime to exchange experiences locally and globally."

Nine teams from the private sector companies in the State of Kuwait have participated in the program from various sectors such as banking, real estate, investment, industry, logistics, and communications. These enterprises are: The National Bank of Kuwait, Equate Petrochemicals, Commercial Bank, Agility, Mabanee Company, Kuwait Holding Company (KIPCO), Boubyan Bank, ALARGAN International Real Estate Company, and Al-Mustaqbal Telecom & Technologies.

The program included several workshops held by experts and academicians from the Royal College of Art to develop innovative projects through activities and events mostly held in Kuwait. The activities included lectures and field visits to various renowned companies, institutions and cultural centers in London. Such venues included:  The British Technology and Innovation Support Center, the Commercial Office of the Mayor of London, the Innovation Center at the Royal Bank of Scotland, the Design Museum of Products and Services, the Fyodor Consulting Office for Innovative Design, the Siemens Smart Cities Center, the Digital Data Observatory at Imperial College, and the Battersea Real Estate Development Center. Speakers addressing participants represented Barclays Bank, Tata Consultancy Office, and Foster & Partners for Architecture, planning and Design, in collaboration with the Executive Education Center, to customize educational concepts in line with requirements and needs of the Kuwaiti private sector.

KFAS’ "Innovation Challenge" program, held annually in collaboration with prominent academic institutions around the world, aims to support the Kuwaiti private sector and the development of work through creating an internal culture that promotes investment in science, technology and innovation. The program facilitates exposure to global best experiences and to learning from the best professional and academic global expertise.

The program uses innovative and up to date methodology in executive education such as interactive instruction, simulation and distance learning as well as case studies and pilot projects. The Innovation Challenge is one of the leading KFAS initiatives especially dedicated to serve the private sector in its quest to build human capacities to enhance business innovation and to ensure that innovation plays a significant role in the development and growth of business.

KFAS investment in such initiatives is driven by its solid commitment to assist in building a knowledge-based economy in Kuwait.