SQU forum highlights research supported by Internal Grants

MUSCAT: The Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Postgraduate Studies and Research at Sultan Qaboos University on Monday organised the first Internal Grant Research Forum that highlighted the outcomes of 15 key research projects funded by the university’s Internal Research Grant.
The Internal Grants are intended to support the kinds of academic research that produce creative and original findings capable of contributing to the generation of knowledge and practices that support the university’s mission as it relates to teaching, research, and community service. In particular, internal grants can help support the realisation of research that contributes to Oman’s social and economic development, prepares new generations of Omani researchers and experts across various fields, supports excellence in all areas of teaching and learning, and that contributes to the university’s effective engagement with the wider community.
Funds allocated for internal grants are derived from SQU’s annual budget, from unconditional research donations made to the university by outside bodies, and from other sources of university-generated income.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Rahma bint Ibrahim al Mahrooqi, SQU Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Postgraduate Studies and Research, said that the Internal Grants system was established at Sultan Qaboos University in 1999. Since then, SQU has allocated RO 7,769,454 to 1,298 projects supported by Internal Grants. “Although the number of supported projects and the amount of funding available have naturally fluctuated over this time, the total amount allocated to internal grant supported projects has continued to increase over the past three years. “Of these, the College of Science has received around RO 3.5 million in funding for 571 projects, the College of Medicine received more than RO 2 million for 172 projects, the College of Agriculture got around RO 1.3 million for 186 projects, and the College of Engineering received about 1.3 million for 236 projects.
“Between them, SQU’s other colleges and research centres have been granted around RO 1.6 million for more than 300 research projects. This level of support for research at SQU has remained constant even during these difficult economic times, with the university’s colleges and research centres receiving around RO 530,000 in 2016,” she stated.
Internal grants are available to academics and researchers working in SQU’s nine colleges and 10 research centres.
The Deputy Vice-Chancellor further said that due to the important role that internal grants have played in the university’s research output since their inception, the Internal Grant Research Forum highlights the completed research projects supported by the Grant.
“This forum offers an ideal opportunity to promote awareness about the number and type of research projects that are supported by the university’s internal grants and to increase interaction between SQU’s researchers themselves and between these researchers and members of the academic and general community.
“The forum also allows an opportunity for researchers to build networks with stakeholders from various sectors of Omani society and to increase the enthusiasm of young researchers for designing and conducting research,” she said.