Estonian scientific collaboration platform Guaana established an official partnership with the Government of Dubai to trial a modern time- and cost-effective scientific research funding model for accelerating global scientific research.
“The leadership of Dubai has demonstrated an exceptional drive and commitment to pioneer solutions that transform the future and turn theoretical concepts of tomorrow into reality today. Guaana is excited to launch the next era of scientific research in partnership with one of the most innovative governments in the world,” said Marko Russiver, founder and CEO of Guaana.
The official signing ceremony was attended by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai; His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai; His Excellency Mohammad Bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister for Cabinet Affairs and the Future, and various Directors General.
Solving a real problem
Currently, scientists spend up to 40% of their time on getting research grants instead of being able to focus on their main goal – formulating new knowledge. It is widely argued that the present funding practices are not suitable for 21st-century realities, therefore seriously hindering the scientific process and in most cases failing to deliver best results.
“It’s deeply alarming that scientific industry, the bedrock for all breakthroughs and discoveries, hasn’t kept pace with innovation,” said Alice Tärk, COO of Guaana. “Our mission is to make scientific research 10x more efficient by implementing a funding system that incentivizes open science projects and cross-disciplinary collaboration with minimal red tape.”
By giving more control to the researcher and harnessing latest technologies, the proposed model eliminates the need for lengthy proposals and peer-review processes. Grants with fewer limitations and requirements allow for more flexible and creative conduct of research. The first global research grant, provided by the Dubai Future Foundation, will be open for applications in early 2017.
“Science knows no borders and speaks no language,” said H.E. Saif Al-Aleeli, CEO of the Dubai Future Foundation. “Open collaboration between researchers globally is the ultimate driver for the next generation of scientific research and essential to accelerate innovation. By supporting Guaana’s vision we demonstrate the core values Dubai Future Foundation believes in and executes upon.” he continued, “Guaana challenges the status quo of academic industry in a sophisticated way that is paramount to bringing forth global change. We hope to be working with many more Estonian founders in the future.”
Guaana merges science funding and research projects to a single central platform. Founded in Estonia by Marko Russiver and Edgar Aronov in late 2014, it has attracted a community of 3,000 scientists and experts representing top universities (e.g. MIT, University of Tokyo, Oxford), research institutions (CERN, NASA, ESA), and major R&D companies (Google X, Ford, Adobe) from 157 countries.