KAUST professors reap Shoman awards

Lebanese-born Dr. Omar Knio, professor of applied mathematics and computational science at KAUST, was joint recipient of the Shoman Award for Mathematical Modeling.
Updated 01 October 2019

KAUST professors reap Shoman awards

Dr. Mohamed Eddaoudi, from Morocco, professor of chemistry and director of the Advanced Membrane and Porous Materials Center (AMPM), Physical Science and Engineering Division at KAUST, recently received the Abdul Hameed Shoman Award for Arab Researchers, an annual award presented by Abdul Hameed Shoman Foundation focusing on six disciplines of science.

Dr. Eddaoudi was not the only KAUST professor to receive this year’s Shoman award. Lebanese-born Dr. Omar Knio, professor of applied mathematics and computational science, Computer, Electrical and Mathematical Science and Engineering Division at KAUST, was joint recipient of the Shoman Award for Mathematical Modeling along with Dr. Shaher Mohammed Ahmad Momani from Jordan. 

Dr. Eddaoudi’s research focuses primarily on developing new strategies for the design and synthesis of functional solid-state materials from molecular building blocks and advancing the understanding of the structure-property relationship of materials.

His team at KAUST is working toward developing made-to-order metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) to tackle more challenging and lingering problems, such as clean energy alternatives, advancing MOFs to store adequate hydrogen at room temperature and moderate pressures, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and advancing the field of MOFs in the direction of creating efficient, low-cost MOFs that can capture large amounts of carbon dioxide.

Dr. Knio focuses on the development of mathematical methods, algorithms, and software for the simulation of complex thermo-fluid systems, the quantification of uncertainty in model predictions, Bayesian model calibration, optimization under uncertainty, and on the application of advanced computational methods to atmospheric and oceanic flows, combustion, and energetic materials.

Earlier in September, the Abdul Hameed Shoman Foundation announced the winners of the Abdul Hameed Shoman Award for Arab Researchers in its 37th cycle for 2019. According to the award’s scientific committee, winners were selected upon reviewing the reports of 12 specialized committees, including an elite group of Arab researchers, who juried submissions.

This year’s award received submissions from 382 candidates from Jordan and the Arab world; 23 applications were disqualified due to noncompliance with the basic conditions of the award. Fifteen researchers submitted for the award’s six fields. Each field is divided into two alternating topics, which are selected by the award’s scientific committee. 

Valentina Qussisiya, CEO of the Abdul Hameed Shoman Foundation, stressed the urgent need to support serious scientific research aimed at overcoming barriers to societal development, and the importance of scientific research directly aimed at problems in the Arab world, particularly those related to localization of technology, food shortage, shrinking arable land, and other challenges that hinder development.

Digital transformation to create 1 million Saudi jobs

Updated 34 min 34 sec ago

Digital transformation to create 1 million Saudi jobs

Speakers and experts at an international conference revealed that an estimated 1 million jobs are expected to be created in the Kingdom over the next five years, due to the acceleration of digital transformation in several industries and sectors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nasser bin Suleiman Al-Nasser, chief executive of the STC Group and head of the Digital Transformation Working Group of the Saudi B20 business group, participated in an interactive session titled “Digital Transformation: The Future After the COVID-19 Pandemic,” which was held recently and included the participation of representatives from the B20 business group in 20 countries.

Al-Nasser explained that future jobs will depend entirely on technology and innovation, noting the gender disparity in the field of technology. It is therefore significant to empower women entrepreneurs and work together with governments to create targeted employment programs, designed to involve and qualify women in the technical sector while encouraging their promotion to leadership positions.

“We need to ensure that young women receive training and guidance when they enter the job market or start their own businesses, and the Kingdom has adopted many initiatives and investments to qualify young men and women through education,” he said. “In 2019, the Kingdom allocated SR1 billion ($266 million) to support universities in preparing students for the job market.”

The Saudi B20 and OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) organized a virtual meeting, where a number of key government actors and G20 members presented recommendations and exchanged experiences on future investments, digital transformation, sustainability and 5G-based digital solutions.

The Saudi business group is committed to providing recommendations that promote the implementation of robust policies through transparent dialogue and constructive cooperation with all relevant parties, supported by a group of international organizations that act as knowledge and communication experts. It is the official platform of the business community at the G20 summit, and plays a representative role for the private sector before the group.

Maadad Al-Ajmi, head of the working group of the B20 Saudi Arabia Integrity and Compliance and vice president and general counsel for legal affairs at STC, participated in a session dedicated to compliance and integrity. Nasser Al-Jareed, head of the Workers’ Communication Group of the B20 and director of the Workers’ Committees Support Program at STC, was also a participant.

The Kingdom has taken qualitative steps toward ensuring a speedy development toward digital transformation through the adoption of state-of-the-art telecommunications and ICT technology, thereby facilitating the transformation toward a knowledge economy and e-commerce. These efforts ultimately aim to achieve higher satisfaction rates and quality of living for both citizens and residents, facilitating their everyday lives.