Applications soar 61% for Qatar National Research Fund graduate student research awards
Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF), a centre of Qatar Foundation Research and Development (QF R&D), saw a 61 % increase in the second cycle of its Graduate Student Research Award applications. The number of proposals rose from 16 to 26, which highlights the growing research sector in Qatar.
The majority of research submissions were from Qatar University in the field of engineering and technology, followed by the natural sciences, agricultural sciences, and social sciences.
Dr Abdul Nasser Al Ansari, Deputy Executive Director of QNRF, expressed his delight at the steady growth of the programme and its popularity among graduate students in Qatar.
He said: “Despite this being GSRA’s second cycle, the results we are witnessing now reflect the continuous growth of research in Qatar. This gives us confidence that the new programme is moving in the right direction, as we establish a national base of talented Qatari and non-Qatari researchers seeking to attain their PhD’s in Qatar.”
Ahmed Baghdady, Program Officer at QNRF, stressed the importance of facilitating capacity-building opportunities in Qatar. “GSRA is one of QNRF’s newest programmes and is aimed at developing the capabilities of graduate students in the country. GSRA will expand the research culture in Qatar, advance the skills of researchers, as well as catalyse the innovative talents of scientists and academics at universities and institutions across Qatar,” he said.
One of the 11 successful proposals, which received funding in this round, will seek to assess the microbiological risk in the fresh produce section of Doha’s wholesale market. The project will study how fresh produce is handled and sold and how different factors could increase the dangers of microbial hazards.
Another study will develop a design for a remote-controlled robot or a smart vehicle equipped with photo processing and video precision guidance systems that utilise sound waves to test and clean water tankers and fuel storage facilities.
A third funded proposal will develop a design for a device that will send and receive data simultaneously and on the same frequency, whereby providing solutions for problems linked with interference. This study could lead to many positive results, which includes doubling the effectiveness and simplifying the frequency planning in wireless networks.
In another study, researchers presented their vision of developing a portable medical system in Qatar that monitors the health status of patients and works on minimal energy consumption. Expanding upon the concept of social networks, the researchers will develop a communications and information sharing protocol that will allow for effective communication between patients by storing and sharing their data. The study will also look into effective methods for energy conservation while transmitting data on programmed wireless networks, as well as evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed protocol and its practical applications.