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Strategic Energy Directions A Case Study

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2008 Annual Conference & Exposition


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008



Conference Session

Engineering Education in the Mid-East / Asia

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

13.1100.1 - 13.1100.15



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Paper Authors


Russel Jones World Expertise LLC

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Russel C. Jones is the founding president of the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. His previous academic career included serving as a faculty member at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, department chair at the Ohio State University, dean of engineering at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, academic vice president at Boston University, and president at the University of Delaware.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Strategic Energy Directions – a case study Russel C. Jones, Ph.D., P.E. President, Masdar Institute of Science and Technology Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates


As the world becomes more concerned about its reliance on oil as the primary source of energy, alternative energy is being explored more vigorously. At least one oil-rich country, Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, has recognized this trend and has made a strategic decision to broaden its energy activities to include alternative energy. One result of this decision is establishment of a high-level education institution to provide the human capacity to meet its technical needs in the alternative energy field.


A combination of circumstances is leading to less reliance on petroleum products as the primary source of energy for the world: environmental concerns over global warming caused by greenhouse gas emissions; increased costs of oil; and the eventual depletion of the oil reserves. These driving forces have stimulated efforts at developing alternative energy sources – solar, wind, biomass, etc.

Oil rich countries have been slow to recognize that the demand and supply of their petroleum reserves is changing. At least one of the richest oil producing countries, sitting on some 10% of the proven reserves in the world, has recognized the impending developments and has chosen a strategic path forward. The emirate of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has taken action to invest a significant portion of its current oil revenues in developing alternative energy sources for the future.

The Masdar Initiative in Abu Dhabi is focused on developing alternative energy sources as an economic base for the future of the country. It includes the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company, which is investing in exploiting current alternative energy technologies and the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, which is developing graduate education and research programs to build human capacity for the future.

The Masdar Institute of Science and Technology is developing masters and doctoral programs, and research activities, relevant to alternative energy. It is to be housed in a green-zone new demonstration city which is designed for zero carbon emissions. This paper describes the plans for these developments, and the current status of implementation.

Jones, R. (2008, June), Strategic Energy Directions A Case Study Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--3278

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