Majid Al-Futtaim commits to sustainability

Tilal Al-Ghaf is Majid Al-Futtaim’s new flagship Dubai community.
Updated 14 June 2018
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Majid Al-Futtaim commits to sustainability

Majid Al-Futtaim is setting sustainability targets for its new flagship Dubai community, Tilal Al-Ghaf, with plans to become the first mixed-use development in the emirate to achieve a “very good” rating under the BREEAM sustainability accreditation program. Energy, water and waste are among key metrics measured to enhance the community’s environmental, social and economic sustainability performance as per BREEAM’s assessment. 

Extensive on-site generation of solar power will be a key pillar of Tilal Al-Ghaf’s sustainability strategy. Majid Al-Futtaim aims to produce 20 percent of the community’s energy needs from renewable solar power, transferring surplus electricity to DEWA through the Shams Dubai initiative which went live in 2017. To achieve this, the first offering of upper-luxury villas and bungalows, launched in April 2018, will offer rooftop photovoltaic solar panels as a standard feature, providing 45 percent of energy needs, along with solar hot water heating and top-notch air conditioning systems. In addition, solar panels will be offered as options on other single-family buildings, and installed on public buildings across the community. Public spaces will be lit by solar-powered streetlights and renewable energy will be deployed alongside smart technology to reduce energy consumption. 

“Majid Al-Futtaim sets itself apart by not just selling bricks and mortar, but also making a steadfast commitment to the community beyond delivering homes by setting long-term goals to enhance its green footprint,” said CEO of Majid Al-Futtaim Communities, Hawazen Esber. “We are taking an ambitious but practical, viable, and achievable approach to sustainability that will not only have environmental benefits, but in the long-run will also deliver financial savings for residents to create a healthy and balanced community living.”

Other environmental targets include a 55 percent reduction in the project’s carbon footprint, and 25 percent reduction in potable water demand. 

All water bodies, such as the fully swimmable Crystal Lagoon, will be topped up using ground water. This will relieve pressure on the water table, which is rising across much of Dubai. Homes will be fitted with water filters to provide pure drinking tap water and reduce consumption of bottled water, potentially saving 200 tons of plastic waste every year. During building, 60 percent of construction waste will be diverted from landfill, and 30 percent of waste will be recycled during operation, with 80 percent of organic waste recycled as compost for the community’s parks and gardens.


PNU, Dell EMC certify first batch of female data scientists

Updated 18 August 2018
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PNU, Dell EMC certify first batch of female data scientists

Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University (PNU), the largest university for women in the world, has partnered with Dell EMC to train and certify Saudi Arabia’s first batch of female data scientists.

In line with Saudi Vision 2030 to promote a knowledge-based economy, PNU partners with national and international organizations to provide degrees and certificates for Saudi female students and graduates. 

The College of Computer and Information Sciences provides a number of certifications and technical training courses in its curriculum for three bachelor degrees — computer science, information systems and information technology. As a member of Dell EMC’s External Research and Academic Alliance Program, the college has successfully trained and certified 57 female data science and big data analytics students this semester with an additional 103 students certified in cloud infrastructure. 

The university also successfully introduced the VMware Install, Configure and Manage course as an elective training course for senior students. 

Auhood Alfaries, dean of College of Computer and Information Sciences, PNU, said: “Building a comprehensive curriculum to cover the essential knowledge area for the computing disciplines and to equip our students with the skills required for the future workplace is a priority for Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University. We are proud to be a leading university to actively promote the data-skilled taskforce in the Kingdom through the introduction of industry-relevant certifications and trainings. 

“We strive to continually evolve to contribute toward building a knowledge-based economy, in alignment with Saudi Vision 2030, through strategic academic partnerships such as the Dell EMC External Research and Academic Alliance program which plays a crucial role in effectively developing our students into tomorrow’s workforce.” 

A recent study by Dell Technologies titled “Realizing 2030: A Divided Vision of the Future” highlighted the lack of workforce readiness as the leading barrier in the Middle East to becoming a successful digital business in 2030, further emphasizing the need for skill development among existing employees and future generations. 

Mohammed Amin, senior vice president and regional manager, Middle East, Turkey and Africa, Dell EMC, said: “The unrelenting pace of digital transformation in the marketplace is creating new challenges for all of us where organizations as well as individuals are increasingly realizing that investing in workforce readiness and the development of new skills is key to future success and competitive differentiation. 

“We congratulate Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University on this wonderful achievement and look forward to continuing to work with them to advance the technical education of women in the region.”

Marwa Zaghow, senior manager, External Research and Academic Alliance, Europe, Middle East, and Africa, Dell EMC, said: “The Dell EMC External Research and Academic Alliance program collaborates with innovative colleges and universities like Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University to effectively contribute to the regional priority of developing IT skillsets among the youth and specifically women.”