Qatar Biomedical Research Institute (QBRI), a member of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, sent three of its members to the world’s largest stem cell conference recently. They attended the International Society of Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) conference to gain international exposure for the institute’s new stem cell centre, and to recruit scientists and post-doctoral researchers for its stem cell program.
Dr Mohamed Emara, who heads a research program in stem cell research at QBRI, attended the scientific sessions and led recruiting efforts at the conference, held in Yokohama, Japan. Marketing staff members Cherryl Madrelejo and Bradley Steffens manned the QBRI exhibition booth. The stand attracted more than 700 visitors, 110 of whom were so interested in working with QBRI that they provided their personal details to the institute’s delegates.
Dr Abdelali Haoudi, Acting Executive Director of QBRI, said, “The representatives of QBRI carried the message of Qatar National Vision 2030 to the most prestigious stem cell conference in the world, and returned with a significant number of viable candidates for the open positions within QBRI.
“Each year, the International Society of Stem Cell Research conference showcases the most up-to-date discoveries made in various stem cell research labs around the world. Now, the global community of stem cell researchers knows that a world-class stem cell research center has been established in Doha as part of Qatar’s commitment to move from a carbon-based economy to a knowledge-based economy.”
Dr Emara added, “The interest in Qatar and QBRI surpassed all expectations. I had several side discussions with scientists in the field, including the current and previous presidents of ISSCR, all of whom are very excited about the initiation of the stem cell research program in Qatar. They are looking forward to our active participation in stem cell research and our contributions to the field. In addition, many of them are very interested in scientific collaboration.
“In terms of recruitment, we conducted several initial employment interviews during the conference, and have received dozens of CVs since we returned to Doha. QBRI’s participation in the ISSCR conference has helped jump-start human capacity-building in the area of stem cell research that is vital to the future of Qatar.”
Dr Emara attributes the success of the QBRI participation in the conference to the co-ordination between QBRI team members to achieve all their goals in the areas of science, recruitment, networking, and publicity. “All the aims behind attending that conference were completely achieved,” he said.
According to marketing analyst Cherryl Madrelejo, 54 percent of the delegates who left contact information with QBRI are interested in employment either as scientists or as post-doctoral researchers. A further 17 percent are keen to collaborate with QBRI on stem cell research projects from their own laboratories in Japan, Australia, South Korea, the UK, the US, and elsewhere.
Bradley Steffens, marketing consulting for health sciences at QBRI, enthused, “The QBRI booth was filled with delegates right up until the announcement that the exhibit was over. Interested delegates continued to visit the QBRI booth on the last day while other exhibitors were closing their booths and packing up their displays. The other exhibitors were amazed at the level of interest in QF and QBRI.”