This workshop was held in collaboration with the College of Engineering (CENG) at Qatar University and with sponsorship from Qatari Diar. It aimed to identify opportunities for collaboration between academia and all key stakeholders in the construction industry.

The workshop was attended by:
• Prof. Abdelmagid Hammuda (Acting Dean, CENG)
• Prof. Abbes Amira (Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, CENG)
• Eng. Ahmad Ali Al-Ansari (Technical Office Manager, Ashghal)
• Mr. Don Ward (Chief Executive, Constructing Excellence)
• Dr. Abdulla Y. Al Sayed (Chief Project Delivery Officer – Asia & Africa, Qatari Diar)
• Dr. Luai M. El-Sabek (Head of Utilities, Qatari Diar),
as well as faculty members, students, and representatives of public and private sectors. In all, over 130 people attended.

The objectives of the workshop were to bridge the gap between academia and industry, to discuss problems, issues, and challenges facing construction industry in Qatar. The event sought to build better connections between researchers and industry practitioners, and to identify areas of collaboration for future action research and education.

The workshop brought together representatives from many private and government agencies. They had the opportunity to exchange their ideas and experiences on research and teaching areas related to construction. Subjects covered included safety, health and welfare; lean delivery; digital and BIM; and procurement and supply chain management.

The slides used by key speakers are available here:

Issues and ideas raised in discussion included:
• Cultural shift required – how can we make best practice and learning widely and freely available?
• How can SMEs engage in successful collaborative research?
• To enable graduates be productive on day 1 when they join their new employer, can one semester of pre-graduation work placement be incorporated as part of the curriculum?
• Can we collate real problems and challenges faced by the industry which would be suitable for dissertation topics, with joint supervision?
• Can we target projects where Ashghal has involvement overseas?
• Is Ashghal’s BIM implementation planned to be nationwide, including private sector also?
• Commercial issues, including procurement, contract and profitability are real blockers to change
• We need to support a major investment in development of Qataris
• Is there a route (in Ashghal) for new ideas to be considered, eg for testing or materials
• How can stakeholders collaborate to co-develop training material?

The next steps planned are to convene a steering group of key stakeholders to guide us in addressing the above suggestions and others and to develop a collaborative programme of research and teaching. We will also organise some small focus groups to look at the opportunities for research collaboration in the four subject areas.

Click here for post-event press releases in Arabic and English:

Press coverage of the event can be seen here:

Anyone interested in participating or learning more about the activities of Constructing Excellence in Qatar should contact Don Ward.

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