Universities announce an Academic Excellence Alliance <em> -News Release</em>
For immediate release
Monday 10 March 2008
A new partnership is announced today between one of the world’s newest universities and Imperial College London.
Imperial and King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) have signed a $50 million (US) Academic Excellence Alliance which will see joint collaborations in research, curriculum development and academic recruitment.
Imperial will partner KAUST, a new international, post-graduate research university opening in Saudi Arabia in 2009, during its first years of operation to enable it to build up its academic staff and curriculum in materials science and chemical engineering.
The partnership will push forward research in a range of areas including carbon capture, hydrogen rich fuels, membranes, materials for high stress environments, structural ceramics, including fuel cell materials, energy engineering, process systems engineering, materials for clean power generation, fluid mechanics and biomaterials.
KAUST’s President-designate, Professor Choon Fong Shih, said, “Imperial College has a sterling reputation for world-class research and academic development. Partnering Imperial College will help to establish a strong relationship between KAUST and similar departments and institutions around the world, further highlighting the many benefits we have to offer our students and faculty.”
Sir Richard Sykes, Rector of Imperial and member of KAUST’s International Advisory Council (IAC), welcomed the agreement saying:
“High quality scientific research and teaching know no borders – it is a global aspiration and has the potential to improve quality of life worldwide. Because of that, we are delighted to partner KAUST in this exciting new venture, which I hope will create a hub of research excellence that can play its part in tackling the challenges of the twenty first Century which science and technology will be vital to solving.”
KAUST will work with Imperial College to:
• Jointly organise the graduate course curriculum and monitor performance
• Create and conduct joint research projects at Imperial College and at KAUST
• Collaborate in setting the requirements for the M.E., M.S.E., and Ph.D. degrees at KAUST
• Collaborate in the nomination of the initial group of KAUST faculty
• Collaborate in joint thesis advisory committees for Ph.D. candidates at KAUST
• Collaborate in joint programs to host visiting fellows, conduct seminars, and participate in technical symposia
• Collaborate on the design and acquisition of research equipment and facilities
“KAUST’s decision to enter into an academic alliance with both the Department of Chemical Engineering and Chemical Technology and Department of Materials at Imperial College is based on its pre-eminent global reputation, built on the long-time scientific achievements of its faculty,” said Nadhmi Al-Nasr, KAUST’s Interim President.
He added, “Imperial College will provide KAUST not only with the practical tools to build the new University’s intellectual capital, but is also a model of the sort of research university KAUST aspires to be.”
KAUST has also signed Academic Excellence Alliances with Stanford University, University of Texas at Austin and University of California-Berkeley.
For further Imperial College information please contact:
Imperial College London
Tel: +44 (0)207 594 6712
Out of hours duty press officer: +44 (0)7803 886 248
Notes to editors:
1. About KAUST
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, the region and around the globe. As an independent, merit-based institution, KAUST will employ many of the best practices from leading research universities and enable top researchers from around the globe and across all cultures to work together to solve challenging scientific and technological issues. The KAUST global research and education network will support diverse talents, both on its campus and at other premier universities and research institutions, through collaborative research agreements, grants, and student scholarship programs. KAUST will be merit-based, open to men and women from all cultures around the world, and governed by an independent, self-perpetuating Board of Trustees. The core campus, located on more than 36 million square meters on the Red Sea at Thuwal, is set to open in September 2009. For more information about KAUST, visit http://www.kaust.edu.sa
2. About Imperial College London
Imperial College London - rated the world’s fifth best university in the 2007 Times Higher Education Supplement University Rankings - is a science-based institution with a reputation for excellence in teaching and research that attracts 12,000 students and 6,000 staff of the highest international quality. Innovative research at the College explores the interface between science, medicine, engineering and business, delivering practical solutions that improve quality of life and the environment - underpinned by a dynamic enterprise culture.
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