Qatar Computing Research Institute said a recent report by three academics explained why more and more researchers are headed to Qatar.
The report analyzed 77 countries’ research bases to discover how many publications each produces. One finding from the research is that more researchers are coming to Qatar than leaving the country, which suggests that the country is a top destination.
Qatar, which in the past had very little research capacity, now spends more than $100 million a year on research. This money supports new institutions and facilities and has helped spur the country’s research foundational growth.
“Twenty years ago we had nothing, but now look at it. Twenty years from now things will be even better,” Omar El-Agnaf, professor of life sciences in the College of Science and Engineering at Hamad bin Khalifa University and acting executive director of Qatar Biomedical Research Institute, said. “We can’t compare with the U.S. or the U.K., but we’re attracting senior and junior scientists from other countries now. We’ve never seen people coming here from those parts of the world before.”
Another positive aspect of the research industry is the local funding provided by the government. Qatar’s government allocates 2.8 percent of its oil income to support research. Getting money is therefore easier than in most countries. Additionally, Qatar has one of the highest standards of living in the Middle East, which is a boon for foreign researchers.
“Qatar is a good environment for foreign people,” Hareb Al Jabri, manager of the Algal Technologies Program at Qatar University, said. “It’s very international, and they feel safe here.”