TECHNOLOGY INNOVATION AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP HIGHLIGHTED AT QATAR FOUNDATION’S ANNUAL RESEARCH CONFERENCE
Doha, Qatar, 23 March 2016: An interactive session devoted to innovation and entrepreneurship took place as part of Qatar Foundation Research and Development’s (QF R&D) Annual Research Conference 2016 (ARC’16).
The session, entitled ‘QSTP: Where Research Goes to Work – How QSTP Addresses the Different Needs of the Innovation Community in Qatar and the Region’, was held under the overarching theme of ‘Investing in Research & Innovating for Society’. Delegates highlighted innovative technology research, commercialisation and entrepreneurship - main areas of focus within the nation’s Research Grand Challenges stipulated in the Qatar National Research Strategy (QNRS).
Qatar’s primary incubator for technology development, Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP), part of QF R&D, is fostering the environment required to accelerate commercialisation of research, and supporting innovation and entrepreneurship. The session featured a series of informative presentations from QSTP’s leadership, including Hamad Al Kuwari, Managing Director of QSTP, Haya Al-Ghanim, QSTP’s Innovation Director, and Dr Danny Ramadan, Acting Director for Strategic Research at QSTP. The initial segment of the session highlighted QSTP’s strategic alignment with the main objectives of QNRS, and its array of initiatives and support programmes for young entrepreneurs in Qatar.
An informative presentation on QSTP’s popular Accelerator Programme for aspiring enterprenuers was conducted by Haya Al-Ghanim. Since its inception, the project has served as a bridge between research and commercialisation, helping aspiring youth in Qatar to turn their ideas into feasible prototypes to address trending market needs. Combining funding and comprehensive mentorship, the Programme provides youth entrepreneurs with three month-long training courses delivered by seasoned local and international experts.
During the session, Dr Danny Ramadan also elaborated on QSTP’s Incubation programme, which is offered to technology-based companies. The presentation set out the benefits provided by the park to support start-ups and create a favourable environment for businesses to thrive. The audience was given examples of entrepreneurial success stories that have received QSTP funding and incubation support. These projects include ‘Samam: A Smart LPG Leakage Detector for a Safer House’ and ‘MaktAPP’, a cloud-based solution for business and team management. Representatives from ExxonMobil Research Centre also spoke to attendees about their experience as a QSTP resident-company.
QSTP provides business development support, including business assessment and evaluation, operational services support, and funding programmes in support of commercialisation. In addition, access to research, technical and marketing services are provided to aspiring youth with innovative, technology-based business ideas. For more information about ARC’16, visit: http://www.qf-arc.org/. You can also follow the latest news and announcements: @QF_ARC.
Image Captions Image 1: Mr Hamad Al Kuwari, Managing Director of Qatar Science and Technology Park.