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2nd Middle East Waste and Environmental

Management Congress - Dead Sea
17-19 February, 2009


أخبار الشرق الأوسط الاقتصادية - Middle East Regional Economic News - 共發現

Major Sponsorship of the British University in Dubai

by Atkins


H.H Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Emirates Airlines, Chancellor of the British University in Dubai Attends Signing Ceremony 

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum who is the Chairman of Emirates Airlines and Chancellor of the British University in Dubai, witnessed the signing of a major sponsorship agreement between Atkins and the British University in Dubai (BUiD).

Under the agreement, Atkins will provide financial and academic support to the Sustainable Design and Built Environment (SDBE) programme at the British University in Dubai for the next three years.

This consolidated agreement between both parties helps promotes the country’s vision of developing knowledge based economy.

His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum said, “We are pleased to jointly work with prestigious international organisations like Atkins who are leaders in sustainable design innovation and independent research. Support of this nature strengthens the link between academia and industry practice and re-emphasises the potential advantages of independent studies to the region in the longer term.”

The British University in Dubai (BUiD), the region’s first research-based postgraduate university, offers specialised MSc programs across several fields of academia. The university’s four faculties are partnered with leading universities in the UK and offer students in the UAE the opportunity to pursue world-class higher education along with independent research opportunities.

“The financial contribution will definitely be advantageous to prospective students, however the long term advantage will come from the knowledge and information they receive from interacting with industry experts at Atkins,” said Dr. Abdulla Al Shamsi, Vice Chancellor at BUiD.

As part of the agreement Atkins will work closely with BUiD students and faculty to encourage practical industry based research and share educational tools and market data.

The research will involve Atkins providing a list of research subjects of importance to the sustainable development and design industry that can be addressed as dissertation topics by students in the Sustainable Design and Built Environment programme. Atkins will also provide technical and practical experience in these research areas along with expert assistance from its offices to help students collect relevant data.

Atkins is a multinational engineering and design consultancy which for the last three years has actively supported the Sustainable Design and Built Environment course at the BUiD through financial contribution and sharing of industry information.

“Working closely with the British University in Dubai is an important strategic decision that facilitates closer ties between higher education and the construction industry as a whole,” said Keith Clarke, CEO Atkins. “Investing in a sustainable future through education fully aligns with our carbon critical design philosophy. This liaison will enable BUiD and Atkins to continue to play a pioneering role in research and development, ensuring engineers and architects can respond to the challenges of a carbon critical world,” he added.

New research from BUiD has received increasing notice across the region with Professor Bassam Abu-Hijleh, Head of the Sustainable Design of the Built Environment Programme (SDBE) at BUiD, Atkins Chair and Fellow, Cardiff University (UK) presenting papers at key industry forums and conferences.

In two stand-out presentations among the seven dozen papers on offer, Dr. Bassam’s applied research distilled the experience of several recent Atkins projects to put the case for greener high-rise buildings, highlighting the use of new technologies. Each paper advocated tailored solutions for specific buildings, by responding to different energy requirement with designs based upon a building’s specific needs.

“We are delighted to extend our support of BUiD for three more years in furtherance of closer collaboration between academia and practice and to the benefit of all stakeholders in Dubai and the region,” said Tim Askew, Managing Director of Atkins in the Middle East & India.

Given the pressing need for postgraduate-level training in order to prepare local practitioners for their respective professions, BUiD – unusually in local higher education – allows students to conclude their Masters Degrees with a work-based research project.

About The British University in Dubai

The British University in Dubai (BUiD) is the Middle East's first research-based, postgraduate university. The University was established to facilitate access to world-class education, training and research in the Middle East. BUiD aspires to the highest, internationally recognized British standards as reflected in its partnership with the University of Edinburgh, the University of Birmingham, the University of Manchester, Cardiff University and the Cass Business School at City University, London. Each has a five or five-star rating in the UK national Research Assessment Exercise that signifies research of international standard.

The not-for-profit university offers full and part-time Masters Degree programmes and Continuing Professional Development courses in Information Technology, Project Management, Human Resources Management, Sustainable Design of the Built Environment, Finance and Banking, Education, and IT Management.

All BUiD's current Masters Programmes have received Initial Accreditation Eligibility Status from the UAE Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research's Commission for Academic Accreditation.

The founders of the University are the Al Maktoum Foundation, the Dubai Development and Investment Authority, Rolls-Royce, the British Business Group and the National Bank of Dubai. The University is governed by a Council under the chairmanship of Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum.

The Emirates Group, DUCAB, Atkins, Dubai Duty Free, Hyder Consulting, the Emirates Foundation and DUGAS are supporters of the university through financial contributions or the provision of scholarships.

For further enquiries call BUiD on +971 4 391 3633.

About Atkins

Atkins ( is a multinational engineering and design consultancy, providing expertise to help resolve complex challenges presented by the built and natural environment. Atkins is the largest multidisciplinary consultancy in Europe, the largest engineering consultancy in both the UK and the Middle East, and the UK's second largest architecture firm.

Atkins’ current projects include:

- Major infrastructure works, such as design and programme management of the civil works for the Dubai Metro red and green lines;

- In the defence sector, the MoD’s Future Rapid Effects System (FRES) programme – overseeing the development of the next generation of medium weight armoured vehicles for the military;

- Significant road contracts, such as a £150 million, five-year integrated contract for Gloucestershire County Council, delivering highway maintenance, design, emergency response, winter maintenance, re-surfacing and recycling;

- High profile designs, such as Durrat Al Bahrain, a spectacular 20 sq km resort for 45,000 people on the south coast of Bahrain, comprising 13 man-made islands.

Atkins won Engineering Consultant of the Year 2008 at the prestigious Building Awards. The company was named among the “20 Best Big Companies to Work For 2008’ by The Sunday Times; The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers 2008; and The Times Top 50 Companies Where Women Want to Work 2007. The company was construction sector winner for the third consecutive year in the Target National Graduate Recruitment Awards 2008.



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