Dubai Economy unveils R&D platform initiative to boost competitiveness

Monday 29 July 2019
Khalid Al Kassim, Assistant Director General for Economic Affairs at Dubai Economy
Dubai - MENA Herald:

Dubai Economy has unveiled a platform initiative to facilitate R&D (research & development) collaboration between the different ecosystem operators in the emirate. The platform initiative seeks to improve Dubai´s R&D environment by making collaboration easier, which is expected to accelerate innovation in Dubai, and consequently support the mission and strategy of Dubai Economy to promote competitiveness and sustainable growth of the local economy.

Khalid Al Kassim, Assistant Director General for Economic Affairs at Dubai Economy, stated: “Active collaboration provides cooperative R&D organisations an edge by allowing for greater expertise and shared resources, which ultimately drive innovation and productivity. Creating a digital platform will help in bringing industry and academia together in Dubai, which will increase competitiveness of the local economy.”

Based on international competitiveness reports, the UAE is ranked highly in the overall competitiveness ranking (2018) of IMD (International Institute for Management Development), but there is room for improvement particularly in the R&D domain. The platform initiative seeks to create a website that brings together local universities, funds and R&D intensive companies in the seven key industry clusters of Dubai initially to start with and expand to other clusters and abroad. 

The website will also help increase R&D awareness and support among citizens in Dubai and other stakeholders in the R&D ecosystem, such as the platform partners, external service providers, and other government entities. In practice, the platform will be a dynamic and interactive matchmaking portal where participants can not only illustrate their competencies but also create collaboration requests that will be visible for visitors of the online site of the platform. 

A Round Table Seminar for key R&D ecosystem operators in Dubai was held recently to engage the potential platform participants. The seminar was initiated to gain support from academia and industry but also to start collaborating with relevant cluster specific topics. 

Maria Al Rais, Director of Business Development at Dubai Economy, said: "We are delighted with the response from academia and industry. There is keen interest from both sides to join the R&D collaboration platform-based network. Active engagement of potential platform participants already at the platform design phase is pivotal for a successful launch.”

As an owner of the platform, Dubai Economy will take a more active role in developing the general R&D environment in Dubai as well as in enhancing both local and federal level coordination. The platform will gradually expand from fostering R&D collaborations and value for participants to generating economy level impact and direct financial income. The economy-level benefits can be mapped into four: ease of collaboration, accelerated innovation, increased R&D activity and improved productivity of the economy in Dubai.

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