Breaking social barriers: The main campus of King Abdullah University of Science and Technology near Jeddah.
Thuwal (Saudi Arabia): Breaking centuries- old social barriers, Saudi Arabia has inaugurated its first-ever co-educational university allowing girls to attend classes without veil, a multi-billion-dollar initiative aimed at producing future scientists, engineers and technologists.
The most advanced research and technology institute in West Asia, which has sprung up on the Red Sea coast at a cost of $10 billion, was launched by King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, with promises of ushering in scientific freedom in a region where conservative interpretation of Islam has been blamed for stifling innovation.
House of Wisdom
Described as the Bait Al-Hikmah or the “House of Wisdom”, the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) is the brainchild of the forward-looking Saudi monarch, who unveiled it amidst tight security on the Kingdom’s National Day recently. The KAUST, which came into being with coffers opened up by the largest Saudi oil company ARAMCO, will have the world’s fastest supercomputers, top scientists, state-of-art labs and initially 400 students including a sizeable number from India. — PTI
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