Qatar Foundation Celebrates Golden Age of Learning in the Arab World and Marks 1000th Anniversary of Masterwork by World's First True Scientist

Global campaign will celebrate achievement in unlocking human potential

Exactly 1000 years after Ibn al-Haytham, the man commonly referred to as the world’s first true scientist began his magnum opus Kitab-al-Manazir, Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development is this week celebrating human achievement and the unlocking of human potential.

A cradle of innovation based in the Middle East, but global in scope and impact, Qatar Foundation is supporting Qatar on its journey from carbon economy to knowledge economy by unlocking human potential through its pioneering work in education, science & research and community development.

Also referred to as the “Founder of Experimental Physics,” Ibn al-Haytham was a scientific pioneer whose ground-breaking masterwork – which he started exactly one thousand years ago in 1011 – now ranks alongside the works of other pioneers such as Newton and Galileo.
 Ibn al-Haytham embodied a five hundred year period of educational and scientific discovery in the Arab World, known as the Golden Age of Learning. The Golden Age saw Arab scholars – from Baghdad to Bokhara, Cairo and Cordoba – lead the world across science, medicine, philosophy and the arts. Unified by the Arabic language, inventions ranged from algebra, pharmacies, Arabic numerals, human anatomy and the categorization of animal and plant life, to the hypodermic syringe, windmills, irrigation and the guitar – innovations which continue to make their mark today. 
Launching Qatar Foundation’s campaign to celebrate achievement and heralding the arrival of the new Golden Age of learning, research and social progress,Dr. Fathy Saoud, President of Qatar Foundation commented:  “Throughout the Golden Age, which ran from the 9th to the 13th Century, Arab scholars were recognized for major advances in astronomy, mathematics, chemistry and other fields of learning.  At Qatar Foundation, we are committed to reviving and continuing this important legacy by building a platform for research and innovation, and fostering a culture of quality and excellence.” 
He continued: “We are bringing world-class education and research, work experience and career opportunities to Qatar, so that our young people can develop the foundation in science, the attitudes and the skills required for the knowledge economy. At the same time, we are building Qatar's innovation and technology capacity, and knowledge base, by developing and commercializing solutions through key sciences. We are fostering a progressive society appropriate to the knowledge economy – while enhancing our cultural life, protecting Qatar’s values and heritage, and addressing immediate social needs in the community. Qatar Foundation is helping to create a renaissance of learning in Qatar and the broader Arab World.”
To mark the advent of the new Golden Age, Qatar Foundation will be launching a global campaign this week to underline what can be achieved when people’s true potential is unlocked. The campaign will showcase twelve pioneers who, together, symbolize Qatar Foundation’s goal of becoming a creator of knowledge in Qatar, the Middle East and around the world.
The twelve individuals who embody the Foundation’s pioneering work and impact are current pioneers or future leaders who have acted to unlock their true potential – with remarkable results:
* Dr. Bakr Nour – leading transplant surgeon and one of only a handful of surgeons in the world who can carry out liver and abdominal organ transplants on patients of all ages
* Professor Nesrin Ozalp – ground-breaking inventor of a solar energy reactor which could finally solve one of the world’s most pressing challenges
* Jinanne Tabra – founder of, the Gulf’s first e-commerce business, which is revolutionizing the way Arabic is taught around the world
* Hashim Al Sada – Qatar’s highest profile inventor, a solar energy campaigner and the creator of a revolutionary portable solar energy technology
* Professor Amal Al-Malki – author, campaigner on Islamic feminist issues and the youngest Qatari PhD recipient
* Noor Al Thani – cutting edge Arab fashion designer and the first Qatari designer to be featured in an Italian fashion show
* Nadia Merchant – disabled medical student and the only female President of the Medical Student Executive Council in Qatar
* Marwa Saleh – student activist on global health issues and national debater for Qatar
* Robin Fetherston – literary expert, founder of a Qatar Foundation-wide innovative reading programme, outstanding educator and a fervent advocate of building knowledge through literature
* Tammi Moe – expert in Arab history and archivist of the most extensive collection of Qatari history from across the world
* Raggi Al Hammouri – disabled computer science student specializing in artificial intelligence
* Ahmed Awad Zayed – 10 year-old Qatar Academy student who has mastered English in just six months





Press Contact:

Alicia Mistry

Phone: 44 (0)207 611 3574




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