Saudi-U.S. Innovation Forum Hosted at MIT | MIT J-WEL

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Saudi-U.S. Innovation Forum Hosted at MIT

President Reif speaks to attendees

Announced earlier this week in MIT News, on March 24, MIT hosted an “Innovation to Impact” forum focused on Saudi Arabia. From the announcement: 

[The forum brought together] governmental leaders, business executives, and academic researchers in an effort to analyze and catalyze new directions for the Saudi economy and to discuss areas of shared interest. The event’s participants included a royal delegation from Saudi Arabia, members of the MIT administration and faculty, and chief executives from several prominent Boston–area companies. Among the other components of the forum, separate, simultaneous roundtable discussions examined the state of health care, renewable energy, and the dynamics of entrepreneurship and venture capital. 

A number of new MIT-Saudi agreements were signed during the event; these agreements created new or extended preexisting collaborations between MIT and affiliated communities, including work on climate change, biomedical research, artificial intelligence, and scholarships. 

MIT has a longstanding history of collaborating with leaders and organizations from Saudi Arabia, especially through Community Jameel and its chairman, Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel ’78, whose generous gifts allowed for the founding of not only J-WEL, but also other J-LABS, including the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL), which has offices globally and works toward reducing poverty by ensuring that policy is grounded in scientific evidence; and the Abdul Latif Jameel World Water and Food Security Lab (J-WAFS), which promotes and coordinates water and food research at MIT to address issues such as climate change and population growth.