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Qatar's leadership has created a vision of sustainable development for the country. The Qatar Foundation (QF) is moving this vision of sustainable development forward in part by establishing a national research institute that conducts and collaborates on applied research in energy, environment, and water issues, the Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute. This book recommends applied research priorities for the new institution and reports on a survey of related research institutions in the region. The authors identified 14 priority research topics that QF should consider for the institute: natural gas and petroleum production and processing, carbon capture and storage, solar-energy development, fuel cells, green building, smart grids, strategic energy planning, desalination, groundwater sustainability, water demand management, integrated water resource management, environmental characterization, and crosscutting environmental research. These topics address key challenges that Qatar's energy, water, and environment resources and industries face, and they are areas in which Qatar could be well positioned to pursue research. Through the survey, the authors also found that Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have common resources and concerns about energy, water, and environment issues, and that GCC institutions are engaged in a range of research activities to address such concerns. The authors recommend that Qatar's institute take a multidisciplinary approach to research, and collaborate with other GCC institutions. It should also seek input from and involve the Qatar government to ensure that research priorities are aligned, resources allocated to energy and environment research reflect the institute's capabilities and needs, research findings reach their intended audience, and the institute and government agencies collaborate.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter One


  • Chapter Two

    Project Methodology

  • Chapter Three

    Findings on Environment and Energy Research in the Gulf Cooperation Council

  • Chapter Four

    Priority Energy Research

  • Chapter Five

    Priority Water Research

  • Chapter Six

    Priority Environment Research

  • Chapter Seven

    Additional Insights on Other Research Topics

  • Chapter Eight

    Recommended Next Steps for the Qatar Foundation

  • Appendix A

    Potential Research Topics and Subtopics

  • Appendix B

    Interim Panel Research Topic Recommendations

  • Appendix C

    Profiles of Institutions in the Gulf Cooperation Council

  • Appendix D

    Interview Protocol for the Gulf Cooperation Council Survey

  • Appendix E

    Literature-Review Search Terms

This research was sponsored by the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science, and Community Development and was conducted in the RAND-Qatar Policy Institute and the Environment, Energy, and Economic Development Program within RAND Infrastructure, Safety, and Environment.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Monograph series. RAND monographs present major research findings that address the challenges facing the public and private sectors. All RAND monographs undergo rigorous peer review to ensure high standards for research quality and objectivity.

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