Magazine article Information Today

Thomson Reuters and KACST: Building a New Pipeline for Innovation

Magazine article Information Today

Thomson Reuters and KACST: Building a New Pipeline for Innovation

Article excerpt

The alliance, which began with a handshake, launched a special partnership between two parties: one in the Middle East and the other in the West.

The agreement doesn't involve oil fields or water rights; it's all about gaining access to information. The King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) organization in Riyadh, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, will be working with the Intellectual Property & Science business of Thomson Reuters to promote research, cultivate innovation, and encourage a global exchange of technology.

KACST is responsible for science, technology, and innovation in Saudi Arabia, and as an independent scientific organization, KACST reports to the Saudi Arabian King and Prime Minister, Abdullah bin Abdulaziz. KACST is gearing up to provide resources for scientific solutions and patent information as part of Saudi Arabia's 15-year National Science, Technology and Innovation Plan. KACST is at the forefront of this initiative to reinvent Saudi Arabia as a knowledge-based economy by 2025.


Identifying key performance indicators and monitoring those indicators are critical to the Kingdom's national strategic plan, and Thomson Reuters has the necessary tools to help KACST launch the first phases of the national strategy initiatives.

"We talked about our strategic plan for scientific innovation, and within that strategic plan, we highlighted key topic areas to work in," says Dr. Abdulaziz Mohammed Al-Swailem, vice president of research and support at KACST. The plan involved connecting "technology partners worldwide to work together hand in hand and shoulder by shoulder on different research aspects," he says.

After KACST approached Thomson Reuters about a possible partnership in late 2010, the collaboration began to take root. "We understood that KACST wanted to continue with its charter to maintain a leadership position in Saudi Arabia," says Joe Donahue, senior vice president of the Life Sciences business at Thomson Reuters. "Initially, KACSTs two main interests were to provide leadership in national policy, national strategy, and funding, and also to have the best-in-class tools and the leading capabilities to support decision making for the researchers at KACST." And Thomson Reuters was in a position to help.

One of the first initiatives under the agreement with Thomson Reuters was to create an interactive university performance dashboard. "With this dashboard, we can monitor the publications, citations issued by KACST and Saudi Arabian organizations and also to embark on our activities in research and patent citation numbers," according to Dr. …

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