Qatar and Turkey in joint initiative for cyber security

A joint funding call, ‘Academia-Industry Co-operation on Cyber Security’, was launched by Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) and Turkey’s leading research agency yesterday.
The programme has been developed by Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF), part of Qatar Foundation Research and Development (QF R&D), and the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK) to pool knowledge, expertise and resources in tackling both nations’ shared cyber-safety priorities.

Dr Hamad al-Ibrahim, executive vice president, QF R&D, Dr Orkun Hasekioglu, vice president, TUBITAK spoke about the initiative at the launch event held at Qatar National Convention Centre.
Representatives from the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Transport and Communications were also present on the occasion and highlighted the strategic importance of cyber security, the need for wider awareness and state-of-the-art techniques to address the challenges it poses.

Representatives from a number of academic institutions and industry were also present on the occasion.
The programme follows a December 2015 bilateral agreement between QNRF and TUBITAK to collaborate on projects of mutual interest. The joint project looks to intensify co-operation between Turkish and Qatari participants in science and industry by means of academia and industry co-operation. The funding aims to enable foundations to be laid for a lasting R&D innovation partnership.
The proposal submission is already open and closes on January 8. The awarded proposals will be announced in March 2018.

Dr Munir Tag, senior programme manager for ICT, QNRF gave a presentation, with details of the programme. Dr Tag said, “Any selected project will get a funding up to $2.15mn with the duration of 24 months for software projects and 36 months for software and hardware development.” “The research priority areas are Cloud and Big Data; security systems in mobile devices and applications and critical infrastructure with state level auditing and compliance requirements. The project must have at least one academic partner and one industrial partner from each country and a joint proposal is prepared by Qatar and Turkish teams,” explained Dr Tag.

“This bilateral co-operation between QNRF and TUBITAK will focus first on cyber security challenges that Qatar and Turkey share, but this is just the beginning. It will ultimately extend into other areas of collaboration designed to address both nations’ strategic priorities,” said
Dr al-Ibrahim.

“It will demonstrate how cross-sectoral partnerships involving all research and development stakeholders can increase the impact and benefit of science and innovation. And, for both Qatar and Turkey, it will open up new avenues for research and innovation that brings value to our economies and tangible benefit to our societies,” he added.

Dr Hasekioglu noted, “In today’s world, focusing solely on academic or industrial collaborations is inadequate in coping with global challenges. Now is the time to foster collaborations involving academia, industry, and government at international level, in the awareness that today’s multi-dimensional problems require a multi-dimensional approach.”

“QNRF’s bilateral collaboration with TUBITAK reflects the fact that, through establishing partnerships that bring together multiple sectors from different nations in order to achieve shared goals, research and innovation becomes more dynamic and impactful, and the development of mutually-beneficial outcomes is accelerated,” said Dr Abdul Sattar al-Taie, executive director, QNRF.

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