Sunday, April 13, 2008

KAUST deserves attention of Bangladeshi Researchers and Research Institutes

Bangladesh belongs to the list of scientifically lagging countries. One of the major obstacles in scientific research in Bangladesh is lack of fund. Establishing collaborative relation with King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) can be source of fund for some Bangladeshi researcher and research institutes. Because it is funding researchers and research institutes through its global research partnership program.

King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) is being built in Saudi Arabia as an international, graduate-level research university dedicated to inspiring a new age of scientific achievement in the Kingdom that will also benefit the region and the world. . The University is set to open in September 2009
KAUST will be:
• supported by a multi-billion dollar endowment
• governed by an independent, self-perpetuating Board of Trustees
• merit-based and open to men and women from around the world

As a graduate-research University, KAUST's fundamental organizing unit will be, not schools or departments, but interdisciplinary Research Institutes.
1. Resources, Energy and Environment;
2. Biosciences and Bioengineering;
3. Materials Science and Engineering;
4. Applied Mathematics and Computational Science.
Within each Research Institute there will be multi-investigator, problem-oriented, often industry-collaborative Research Centers.

KAUST Will be a fully a research University. Unlike many primarily undergraduate universities, KAUST will not have a two-tier faculty. All faculty will be of the highest caliber and able to formulate value-added research projects; or will have unique background experience – as teachers or in private industry – that supports KAUST's mission as a 21st century University.

The driving factor of KAUST's research agenda is to accelerate scientific discovery and technological innovation. The corresponding strategy in terms of organizational development involves flexible funding and outreach to potential partner institutions, and targeted investments in physical and intellectual infrastructure to stimulate collaboration with other research universities and the private sector.

Global Research Partnership will provide three major streams of funding:
• Centers and Centers-in-Development — KAUST will provide five-year grant support to university-based, multi-investigator centers, with industry participation possible. In addition, three-year awards for KAUST Centers-in-Development will be available for smaller groups seeking to assemble the resources for a KAUST Center.
• KAUST Investigators — In March 2008, KAUST awarded the first round of GRP Investigator grants to twelve highly accomplished scientists and engineers. KAUST is providing five-year individual grants to this group to investigate a wide range of research topics, including water desalination, renewable and sustainable next-generation energy sources, genomics of salt-tolerant plants, durable and environmentally friendly construction materials, hydrocarbon utility, low-cost solar cell efficiency, and disease immunization.
• KAUST Research Fellows — KAUST will provide three-year support to exceptional post-doctoral researchers.

The financial support will be as follows:
• Centers and Centers-in-Development – Multi-investigator; may involve more than one university; often with private-sector participation. Center awards will provide up to $5 million per year for five years; and the Center-in-Development program will provide up to $1.5 million per year for three years.
• Investigators – Individual scientists or engineers leading a laboratory. Investigator awards will provide up to $2 million per year for five years.
• Research Fellows – Post-doctoral researchers. Research Fellow awards will provide $100,000 in salary, benefits and research support per year for three years.

According to the website, The Global Research Partnership will grow in size and scope as the University opens its doors, allowing KAUST to leverage the relationships in its externally funded network and to grow its own high-quality research activity on the campus. So there is scope for Bangladeshi Research researcher and Institutes to establish partnership with it.

Under the Partnership Scientists' will work at their home institutions .Grant will be given based on Quality of the proposed research project, it’s relevance to KAUST's research objectives and Contribution of the research activity to the development of KAUST and the global research and education enterprise.

Initial Research Focus Areas include
• Carbon capture and hydrogen-rich fuels
• Advanced concepts in desalination and water supply
• Biotechnology for food, nutrition, public health, biodiversity and industrial processes
• Catalysis and polymer chemistry
• Applied mathematics and computational science
• Scientific and engineering computing (e.g. computational chemistry)

So Bangladeshi research institute such as Centre fro Excellence, Energy centre of Dhaka University, BUET and National Institute of Biotechnology should focus on establishing collaborative relation with KAUST.

It deserves mentioning here that KAUST will support male and female researchers equally. Interested person can get more Information at www.kaust.edu.sa .
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