From the Kingdom’s long-term vision of science, technology and innovation for building a knowledge-based society and economy, and a globally completive national innovation system, King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology implemented the First National Science, Technology and Innovation Plan (Maarifah I) during the years 1428/1428 (2008) until 1435/1436 AH (2014), which constitutes the first of four stages of implementing the national policy for science and technology.
Maarifah I targeted the establishment of the infrastructure for the national science, technology and innovation ecosystem to constitute the foundation for achieving desired scientific and technological advancement in subsequent national Five Years Development Plans, and contributing towards the transformation of the Kingdom from a resource-based economy into a knowledge-based economy, with emphasis on innovation and investment in building national human resources. Further, Maarifah I reinforced the growing relations between science and society. International indicators of scientific research such as the number of intellectual properties and scientific publications, show progressive improvements reflecting the growing status of the scientific institutions in the Kingdom during the implementation of Maarifah I.
The Second National Science, Technology, and Innovation Plan (Maarifah II) covers the period from year 1436 (2015) to 1440/1436 AH (2019), and aims to make the Kingdom a leader in the field of science, technology and innovation in the Middle East, by rendering an effective national supportive ecosystem for supporting innovative ideas starting at the basic research stage, to the development of value-added products that contribute to investing in research for industry.
Finally, I submit my thanks and gratitude to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, the patron of the national science, technology and innovation ecosystem, and to HRH the Crown Prince and HRH Deputy Crown Prince for their support of KACST. Thanks are also extended to all government and private sectors that contributed to materializing Maarifah I’s achievements and gains.
Dr. Turki bin Saud bin Mohammed Al-Saud
President of King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology