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Qatar National Research Fund awards grants to junior scientists
Wael Khedr
/ Categories: In the Media

Qatar National Research Fund awards grants to junior scientists

Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF), a centre of Qatar Foundation Research and Development (QF R&D), has awarded three grants to junior scientists in Qatar conducting research in the fields of health, energy and environment. The Junior Scientists Research Experience Program (JSREP), now in its 6th cycle, funds young Qatar-based researchers under the age of 40 who hold a Ph.D., M.D. or terminal academic research degree.

One of the awarded proposals from Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar, which is based at Qatar Foundation, will investigate new methods to treat obesity, a medical condition due to excess body fat. Obesity is a serious health issue which can lead to type 2 diabetes, heart conditions, osteoarthritis, and certain types of cancer.

Another project, from Qatar University, will seek to improve patient care in Qatar for individuals that suffer from mental health issues. This study will examine the benefits of having healthcare providers from different professions collaborate on the most optimal treatment for their patients. The research also aims to improve public awareness of mental health. In addition, a team from Texas A&M University at Qatar was awarded a grant for their innovative proposal that seeks to improve existing methods for process monitoring, which could be used to enhance monitoring of air quality, drinking water distribution networks, and wastewater treatment.

QNRF programs are designed to engage researchers with different levels of experience, from students to top tier scientists. The twice-yearly Junior Scientists Research Experience Program awards successful applicants up to a maximum of US$100,000 in grants per proposal, per year, for research projects lasting from one to three years.

QNRF’s Executive Director, Dr Abdul Sattar Al-Taie, said: “At QNRF, we support scientific talents by providing gifted young people with the opportunity to carry out their own independent research that is of national priority to Qatar. “It is through supporting their efforts that we can effectively build a knowledge-based economy and transform our nation into a global centre of research excellence.”

Elaborating further on the benefits of this year’s awarded JSREP proposals, Nadine Younes, Program Officer at QNRF, added: “The two awarded projects in health areas will certainly help develop a comprehensive, world-class, healthcare system, which would contribute directly to the goals and objectives of the Qatar National Health Strategy 2011-2016. “Similarly, the research proposed in the environmental project could prove essential in meeting the country’s needs for environmental health and safety improvements.”

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