20 June 2020
Under the patronage and in the presence of His Excellency Prof. Hamid M.K. Al Naimiy, Chancellor of the University of Sharjah, the Research Institute for Science and Engineering (RISE) at the University of Sharjah organized the "Fifth Science and Engineering Research Forum," which aims this year to introduce the research centers of RISE and shed light on research projects in the various specializations currently conducted by teams and research groups, as well as research topics and ideas and proposed project implementations in the future in light of the current challenges represented by the COVID-19 pandemic crisis and how scientific research will contribute to facing and overcoming its effects on various economic, health and social fields.
Prof. Maamar Bettayeb, Vice Chancellor of the University for Research and Graduate Studies, attended the opening ceremony along with Dr. Salah Taher, Vice Chancellor of the University for Community Affairs; Professor Dr. Abdullah Shanabeh, Director of RISE; and the keynote speaker at the Forum Dr. Farid Al-Amiri, Director of the Environmental System for Research and Development in Abu Dhabi Research and Development Authority; as well as College Deans., Department Heads, faculty members and researchers at the University.
The inaugural session of the meeting started with the word of His Excellency the Chancellor of the University, in which he conveyed the highest verses of thanks, respect and gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council, Ruler of Sharjah, and the President of the University. He added that under the guidance of His Highness and his constant care and support, the University of Sharjah succeeded in its development and reaching its current position among the ranks of advanced universities regionally and globally. The University of Sharjah has achieved during the past few years a significant progress in the field of scientific research, as evidenced by the steady increase in the number of published research papers in international scientific journals, which strengthens global citations with these papers. This in addition to the scientists and researchers' achievements in having international patents and the significant increase in research grants funded internally and externally in cooperation with local and international scientific institutions. This has contributed greatly to consolidating this progress and development in scientific research at the University of Sharjah, which made it stand today alongside many of the most prestigious and best universities at the local, regional and international levels, and enjoy a strong and honorable academic standing and reputation. This is confirmed by the progress of its classification locally globally, in accordance with decisions made by international universities ranking organizations.
The Chancellor of the University also stressed that this Forum will focus on introducing the new research centers of excellence affiliated to RISE, which were recently approved by the Board of Trustees of the University as part of the University's strategic plan in this the field. These centers will work in cooperation with other centers at the University to serve the local community in various priority areas in the Emirate of Sharjah and the United Arab Emirates.
In his speech during the opening session of the Forum, Prof. Maamar Bettayeb stressed that the University of Sharjah, during its current strategic plan, focuses on scientific research aimed at serving and developing society, and that the Forum works to shed light on the latest developments of research centers and groups and what they achieved in the research projects they are currently working on. This is in addition to the participation of graduate students and scientific research in presenting samples of their scientific research through the poster exhibition accompanying the Forum.
Dr. Salah Taher, also shed light on the Sharjah Oasis for Research, Technology and Innovation, which is a free zone authority and wholly owned by the University of Sharjah, and represents a real breakthrough for the University of Sharjah to link scientific research with industry. As well as an important input towards the knowledge society and achieving integration and cooperation between the various research centers and institutes University of Sharjah on the one hand, and between international companies and institutions on the other hand in the practical application of the outputs and results of scientific research and turn them into innovations and inventions that contribute to the service and development of the local, regional and global community. It will also represent an important opportunity for University students at the undergraduate and graduate levels to interact directly with business owners and institutions to benefit from the applied applications of their scientific research.
Prof. Abdullah Shanabeh, Director of RISE, stressed the importance of the Forum for presenting the projects of research centers and groups, and informing its members of the projects that other groups are working on in several research fields, including advanced materials research, applied materials, sustainable and renewable energy development, and materials building, sustainable civil infrastructure systems, sustainable engineering asset management, distributed systems and networks, research and development of open source software in the United Arab Emirates, radiation, organic chemistry, environmental and chemical life sciences, and human genetics and stem cells.
Prof. Mohamed Obaidat, Dean of the College of Computing and Informatics, also addressed in his speech an introductory overview of the College and its teaching programs in the bachelor's, master's and PhD stages, indicating that the College will contribute through its graduates to meet the needs of labor markets in the field of computing, informatics, information security and artificial intelligence, and will work to host many conferences, symposia and scientific workshops during the coming period in cooperation with a group of international institutions and bodies such as the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the International Computer Automation Organization (ACM) and a number of international universities.
Prof. Ahmed Al-Shamaa, Dean of the College of Engineering, indicated that the College is one of the largest colleges in the University and it occupies a distinguished position among all engineering colleges in the United Arab Emirates. He commended the role that faculty members contribute to the College within the research teams of RISE as the college will work during the coming stage to enhance cooperation with various local and international institutions and the service of scientific research.
While Prof. Nouar Thabet, Dean of the College of Sciences, pointed out the College's contribution to the field of scientific research, and the increasing number of registered research projects that faculty members are working on in the College of Sciences in many scientific disciplines that contribute to serving the local community and the surrounding environment.
The keynote speaker Dr. Farid Al-Amiri, Director of the Environmental System for Research and Development at the Abu Dhabi Research and Development Authority, addressed in his speech the topic of the importance of achieving an environmental system for research and development in the United Arab Emirates by proposing a framework for the system of environmental research and development in the country and absorbing all the necessary components to enhance their search results.
During the discussion session on remotely ongoing scientific research that revolves around the COVID-19 pandemic led by Prof. Maamar Bettayeb and Dr. Farid Al-Amiri, Prof. Bettayeb clarified that the University of Sharjah is developing regulations for precautionary measures in line with the UAE's directions and that must be followed during this period for groups and research institutes so that the number of individuals in the laboratory does not exceed 3 people. 66 proposals for research revolving around the COVID-19 pandemics were proposed with the participation of all scientific colleges and research groups in all fields to take advantage of all the views and solutions that will be presented to society with a funding 5 million dirhams for this research. Dr. Farid Al-Amiri added that in the Abu Dhabi Research and Development Authority, work is carried out in the first stage through a virtual research institute that includes 3 research groups, and in the second phase, funding will be provided so that cooperation with many universities can be made in this research.
The directors of the research centers presented through three research sessions an introductory presentation of the research centers, which are the Center for Advanced Materials Research, the Center for Sustainable Energy and Energy Systems Research, and the Center for Network Security Research and Data Analysis. The presentations dealt with the importance of these centers and their role in the service of scientific research, and their cooperation with local and regional bodies. A group of researchers in these centers also presented several their ongoing research projects and discussed the results.