Magazine article The Times Higher Education Supplement : THE

KAUST Head to Underline Role in Job Creation

Magazine article The Times Higher Education Supplement : THE

KAUST Head to Underline Role in Job Creation

Article excerpt

The president of a flagship research university in Saudi Arabia will emphasise his institution's role in creating jobs for the country's burgeoning youth population in the Higher Education Policy Institute's annual lecture.

In the aftermath of the Arab Spring - in which jobless graduates were often first to take to the streets - Choon Fong Shih will stress that the kingdom's enormous oil revenues will not be enough to satisfy the demand for employment among young people.

The King Abdullah University of Science and Technology could fill an "urgent need to provide quality employment in a country with plenty of oil and plenty of youth, but not plenty of jobs", he was expected to say in the lecture at the Royal Geographical Society in London on 10 May.

When KAUST opened in 2009, it broke new ground by allowing mixed-sex classes. The institution has global ambitions: by 2020, it aims to have a citation and publication rate "comparable to that of the world's top 10 science and technology universities".

Professor Shih, former vice-chancellor of the National University of Singapore, was to argue: "Oil revenues can pay for food and water. …

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