KAU Administration of International Agreements
KAU has established its “Administration of International Agreements” to organize, follow up, and develop international agreements between the university and international universities, research centers, and scientific institutions. The aim of such efforts is to accelerate the university's anticipated scientific progress and expedite technology transfer from the world's most prestigious universities and scientific institutes to KAU. The administration also prepares a fully automated management system of international agreements and service contracts, and ensures adequate budgetary provisions are in place for effective task design and implementation.
The structure of the administration is illustrated in Fig. 1. The administration consists of five units under the management of the general supervisor of the administration who is under the supervision of the Director (President) of the University. These units are as follows:
• Research Agreements Unit
• Educational Agreements Unit
• Creative and Innovative Agreements Unit
Fig. 1 The structure of the administration
• Administrative and Training Agreements Unit
• Academic Accreditation and Classification Agreements Unit.
To ensure administrative effectiveness, the University Vice-Presidents are tasked with the following responsibilities concerning international agreements:
• The Vice-President for Graduate Studies and Scientific Research supervises agreements concerning graduate studies and scientific research.
• The Vice-President for Academic Affairs supervises agreements concerning
• The Vice-President for Business and Knowledge Creativity supervises agreements concerning creativity, innovation services, and inventions.
• The University Vice-President supervises agreements concerning administrative
services and training.
• The Vice-President for Development supervises agreements concerning cultural, quality, and academic accreditation and concerning classification and ranking of the university.
King Abdulaziz University has established joint international cooperation agreements and service contracts with many of the world's distinguished universities and educational institutions. There are currently more than 75 operational service contracts and several other agreements and memorandums of understanding between KAU and universities, scientific institutions, and specialized companies in 23 countries ranging from the United Stated of America, Canada, and Argentina in the Americas to Great Britain, France, Spain, Germany, Finland, Switzerland, and Turkey in Europe to China, Korea, and Japan in Asia to Australia and New Zealand. These agreements and service contracts specialize in the implementation of joint research projects and patents; the exchange of students, staff, faculty members, and scientific expertise; the establishment of joint graduate programs; curriculum development; development of distance education; training programs and rehabilitation of medical graduate students; and training faculty members. Figures 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 show the signing ceremonies of some recent agreements and service contracts.
The service contract signed with Tokai University in Japan in February 2012 is an example of a joint cooperation and service contract signed by the university and of its beneficial consequences. It was entered into in order to facilitate transfer of expertise in designing, manufacturing, and testing solar-powered drones (airplanes without pilots) used for civilian purposes. The contract was initially for three years. Seven KAU faculty members, 10 KAU students, seven Tokai University faculty members, and 11 Tokai University students all jointly participated in the project. The drone was designed and manufactured with a wingspan of 3.75 m and was capable of flying for 8 h continuously in daylight at a maximum speed of 50 km/h. It was named “Solar Falcon-1” and was successfully tested. Several scientific research papers have been based on this innovative project and published. Figure 7 shows the 'Solar Falcon-1' drone.
Fig. 2 Signing the extension of the Service Contract with Tokai University
Fig. 3 Negotiating the Service Contract with Sumitomo Chemical Co., Japan
Fig. 4 Signing the memorandum of understanding with Osaka University, Japan
Fig. 5 Signing the memorandum of understanding with Kyoto University, Japan
Fig. 6 Signing the momentum of understanding with Seoul National University, Korea
Due to the success achieved in the first phase, which culminated in the successful manufacture and testing of the drone, and in order to further benefit from the Japanese experience, it was agreed to extend the project's second phase so as to design, manufacture, and test the prototype drone's successor “Solar Falcon-2”. This drone has a 7 m wingspan and is capable of flying in daylight and at night for five days consecutively at a maximum speed of 40 km/h. In view of this success, an extension of the service contract has been signed for a fourth year.