KAUST shares smart city tech with Medina

Prof. Pierre Magistretti and Eng. Abdulrahman Ibrahim at the MoU signing.

Thuwal, Saudi Arabia, February 12, 2024 – King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) and Al-Madinah Region Development Authority (MDA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the Global Smart Cities Forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on February 12, 2024, to better prepare the city of Al-Madinah, Saudi Arabia, for the future.

The cooperation serves to enhance efficiency, resiliency and safety in Al-Madinah through flash-flood forecasting and urban-drainage monitoring. The joint effort was signed by KAUST Vice President of Research Professor Pierre Magistretti and MDA Chief Data and Innovation Officer Eng. Abdulrahman Ibrahim.

The Global Smart City Forum in Riyadh serves as a platform for distinguished global experts in the fields of artificial intelligence and smart cities to discuss important topics related to the future of smart cities and their impact on communities. The discussions at the two-day forum aim to shape an ambitious vision for the future of cities using smart solutions through city improvement plans to achieve sustainable urban development that enhances quality of life.

KAUST will share not only its high-resolution climate change projections for the region but also assess the spatiotemporal dynamics of soil loss and sediment transport.

Professor Magistretti said that this agreement reflects both organizations' clear commitment to national progress for the Kingdom.

“I am delighted to sign this cooperation agreement between KAUST and the Madinah Regional Development Authority. By combining our strengths, we aim to deliver impactful solutions to the Madinah region and work together to tackle pressing challenges in the environmental and water sectors, among others,” he said.

The professor highlighted that through joint efforts in research and development for smart cities and data science and through joint training activities, KAUST will catalyze positive change in areas such as urban planning, environmental sustainability and technology for the Madinah region.

“With agreements such as this one, we're placing KAUST and Madinah in an excellent position to shape a brighter future for Saudi Arabia as a whole,” he added.

“Capitalizing on KAUST’s capabilities in distinctive and collaborative research, this MoU establishes the framework for both parties to collaborate," added MDA Chief of Data Analytics and Innovation Eng. Abdulrahman Ibrahim, as he emphasized the importance of harnessing Al-Madinah Region Development Authority’s capabilities in translating research outcomes into actionable strategies for the region’s smart, sustainable and resilient cities.