Minister of State for Advanced Technology Explores UAE University’s Innovative Approach to Promoting R&D and 4IR Tech Among Students

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  • H.E. Sarah Al Amiri: Academic institutions are a leading partner in driving innovation and further developing the advanced technology sector

H.E. Dr Zaki Anwar Nusseibeh: The United Arab Emirates University works in line with the UAE’s Centennial vision to be the engine of research and innovation in the region

Al Ain: Her Excellency Sarah bint Yousif Al Amiri, Minister of State for Advanced Technology, today explored United Arab Emirates University’s (UAEU) innovation and research and development programmes on a tour of the institution’s departments and facilities.

Accompanied by H.E. Dr Zaki Anwar Nusseibeh, Minister of State and UAEU Chancellor, H.E. Al Amiri was introduced to the various projects the University has launched – initiatives that aim to promote innovation and advanced technologies that can be used to support the UAE’s industrial sector.

H.E. Al Amiri’s visit lays the foundation for a new phase of cooperation between the Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology and its strategic partners. The relationship has been established to achieve the goals of the National Advanced Technology Agenda to promote national industrial innovation and ensure commercial viability of innovation-based products.

“In line with the UAE Strategy for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, we are always working to improve the outputs of the education sector – particularly in the advanced technology and science disciplines – as well as to promote applied research into bioengineering, nanotechnology at national universities and specialised centres,” said H.E. Sarah Al Amiri. “The United Arab Emirates University is a prominent national academic institution and a leader in supplying the national industrial sector with brilliant minds and skilled experts capable of driving the UAE’s transformation into a knowledge- and innovation-based economy.”

“The Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology has set a strategic vision to advance key industrial sectors and establish systems that drive industrial development. This serves the vision of the UAE’s leadership and propel the country towards a global leadership position in industry, enhancing its competitiveness,” H.E. Al Amiri added. “We will shortly be announcing policies, plans and programmes to boost national production by optimising the use of advanced technology.”

The Minister of State was introduced to the latest developments in District 4.0 – the largest project launched by an academic institution in the region and one that aims to establish a sustainable research infrastructure and integrate the Fourth Industrial Revolution into academic curricula.

The tour also covered key facilities across the UAEU campus, including the laboratories of the Faculty of Engineering, which support students and researchers in various fields such as architecture and chemical, petroleum, civil, environmental, electrical and mechanical engineering.

The tour continued at the UAEU Science and Innovation Park, a global centre for research, innovation and entrepreneurship, where H.E. Al Amiri was briefed about the training and support programmes provided to young innovators and entrepreneurs to help them develop products that can boost the UAE’s competitiveness.

Next on the itinerary was the National Centre for Space Science and Technology, where H.E. Al Amiri reviewed how the centre plays an important role in creating advanced technology that can be transferred to other vital sectors, such as food security, the circular economy and health. Following the visit, Her Excellency was briefed about the College of Medicine and Health Sciences’ approach to encouraging multidisciplinary research projects that allow students to play their part in shaping the future of the health sector.

H.E. Dr Zaki Anwar Nusseibeh said: “The United Arab Emirates University works in line with the UAE’s Centennial vision and its preparations for the next 50 years. We strive to be the engine of research and innovation in the region, adopting artificial intelligence and the technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to achieve sustainability in the technological and industrial fields. The University is always open to building strategic partnerships with international scientific and academic institutions to direct investments towards its scientific research centres and pioneering projects.” 

“The United Arab Emirates University is a research-based institution,” added H.E Nusseibeh. “Our commitment to our mission and vision positions us as the ‘University of the Future’. Launching global projects such as District 4.0, the National Centre for Space Science and Technology, the Science and Innovation Park, and several research centres, has allowed us to invent new ways to educate, impart knowledge and encourage innovation, which benefits both our students and our strategic partners.”

H.E. Al Amiri was accompanied by several officials from UAEU during her visit, including Prof. Ghaleb Ali Al Hadrami Al Breiki, UAEU Acting Vice Chancellor; Prof. Mohammed Hassan Ali Mohammed, Acting Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs & Provost, Deans, department directors and faculty members.

UAEU is the first comprehensive national university that works to provide research solutions to the challenges facing the local, regional, and international community. With a mission to achieve a leading international research position and working alongside its partners in the industrial sector, the university has established several research centres of strategic importance for the country and the region. UAEU has also designed a number of academic programmes in partnership with employers in an effort to ensure its graduates find work upon completion of their studies.

About the Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology:

The UAE Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology, established in July 2020, is mandated with strengthening the UAE’s industrial sector, specifically by drawing on the advanced technology and tools of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. 

The Ministry has three overarching goals: Strengthening the UAE’s industrial base, ensuring in country value, and raising the competitiveness of local industries. By enhancing the contribution of advanced technology, the Ministry will support the country’s sustainable economic growth, and ensure GDP contribution from the industry sector.  

The Ministry will draft policies, laws and programmes to create a world-class industrial development framework for the nation that will help attract foreign direct investment, boost In-Country Value creation, support national entrepreneurship, drive job creation, and boost exports of ‘Made in UAE’ products. 

From encouraging the establishment of industrial complexes to raising local capacity in advanced technology, the Ministry will accelerate industrial development in a bid to drive economic growth, diversification, value retention and national self-reliance.