Al Ain: In support of national and global efforts to find innovative solutions to the challenges of climate change and within the UAE University’s roadmap toward COP28 and beyond (2023-2026), the University has aligned its research priorities with the UAE’s (COP28) historic deal by reviewing its future strategic research directions based on the conference outcomes.

Prof. Ahmed Ali Murad - Associate Provost for Research at the UAE University, said, “the University follows a roadmap that empowers youth through research activities, and enhances local and international cooperation to achieve the goals of climate neutrality 2050. The university also employs the outcomes of COP 28 in strengthening its roadmap toward COP 28 and beyond (2023-2026). The first phase of the roadmap focused on the Sustainability Year, in which 25 different events were organized.  The second phase coincided with COP 28 from November 30 to December 12, 2023, during which 15 major events were organized. The third phase extends from December 13, 2023 until the end of the current strategic cycle in December 2026.

Prof. Ahmed added that the COP28 historic consensus constitutes the basis of the third phase of the roadmap. Many events will be organized, including international scientific conferences, research initiatives, community activities, and development of relevant academic programs that enhance awareness of environmental conservation and emphasize the importance of community participation in promoting sustainable development. The UAE University has identified water, energy, food, agriculture, and sustainability as strategic research priorities, according to the research and innovation strategy (2023-2026(.

Prof. Ahmed stressed that, in response to the COP28 historic consensus, the UAE University will launch research topics at the beginning of its next cycle of the research funding program. The submission of proposals will begin in the first week of January 2024 and will continue for three months to the end of March.  Within the main strategic theme of water. Energy, food and agriculture sustainability, the following research topics will be included: water security and climate change, food systems and sustainable agriculture, ecosystems and biodiversity, infrastructure resilience, climate and health, and protecting cultural under the conditions of climate change.