August 20, 2017

QNRF, TÜBİTAK Develop New Cyber Security Program

A groundbreaking model designed to drive public-private sector collaboration and generate impact will be the cornerstone of a new program, developed by Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) and Turkey’s leading research agency, that is set to strengthen Qatar’s cyber resilience.
The program will focus on three themes addressing cybersecurity challenges that Qatar and Turkey share – cloud and big data security, security systems for mobile devices and applications, and critical infrastructure cybersecurity – and will be jointly funded by QNRF, part of Qatar FoundationResearch and Development (QF R&D), and the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK).

Academic and research institutes, and industry, private sector, and government partners, from both nations will work side-by-side through the joint funding program, which is due to be launched in mid-September 2017. The awarded projects will be announced in March 2018, with those comprising both a software and hardware element being funded for three years, and software-only projects being funded for two years.

The program has been developed following a December 2015 agreement between QNRF and TÜBİTAK to collaborate on projects in areas of mutual interest, recognizing the vital role of science, research, and technological innovation in the economic and social development of their respective countries. Cybersecurity’s status as an issue of strategic priority for both Qatar and Turkey led to it being selected as the focus of the initial program, with the partnership having scope for further bilateral cooperation in other key areas.

“Turkey’s capacity for innovation and the development of advanced technology in the realm of cybersecurity – one of Qatar’s Research Grand Challenges – is very strong, and our shared challenges, priorities, and belief in science and research as a driver of economic growth, mean there is great synergy between us,” said Nada Al-Olaqi, Head of the Qatari delegation, and Business Planning and Performance Manager, Office of Policy, Planning and Evaluation, QF R&D.

A QF R&D delegation visited TÜBİTAK’s headquarters from August 2 – 3, 2017, to formalize the joint funding call, which will employ a collaboration model called ‘2+2’. This model outlines how the impact of research and innovation can be intensified by academia, research institutes, and other stakeholders – industries, private companies, and government entities – pooling their resources, facilities, and expertise to nurture innovation and create economic growth.

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