Engaging stakeholders: 6th Stakeholders meeting and think tank dialogue

6th Stakeholder's Meeting

The 6th Stakeholders Meeting and 3rd Think Tank Dialogue was held in Islamabad, Pakistan, on September 24, 2019.

Throughout the USPCAS-E project, Arizona State University kept its stakeholders engaged in driving private sector innovation, recommend policies for economic growth, and contribute solutions to address Pakistan’s energy challenges. The stakeholder meetings provided regular opportunities to bring public and private sector experts together to foster dialogue and provide a forum for soliciting feedback and advice.

The 6th Stakeholders Meeting and 3rd Think Tank Dialogue was held in Islamabad, Pakistan, on September 24, 2019. Organized and led by ASU,  this consultative meeting was attended by over 90 participants, including officials from the Government of Pakistan, Higher Education Commission (HEC), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and industry and academic partners. The meeting also provided a forum to share the USPCAS-E program achievements, particularly the applied energy research conducted by faculty and students.

A panel discussion focused on the impact of the USPCAS-E initiative on Pakistan’s energy sector and future opportunities.

Panelists included Mr. Shahjahan Mirza (Managing Director Private Power infrastructure Board), Dr. Zain ul Abideen, (Director General HEC), Mr. N.A. Zuberi (COO Three Gorges Dam), Dr. Irfan Mufti, (Dean UET Peshawar), Mr. Ali Qureshi (National Expert, United Nations Industrial Development Organization), and Ms. Misbah Faiz, (USPCAS-E alumni and founder of Khawateen Rozgar Services). The panelist commented on the centers’ achievements and emphasized the need for ongoing energy sector involvement in USPCAS-E to keep it relevant to the country’s needs through mutually beneficial partnerships.

During the Think Tank Dialogue, a panel discussed the role of Pakistani universities in meeting the country’s energy needs, producing a qualified workforce, and conducting industrial R&D. Experts included Dr. Rana Abdul Jabbar (Alternative Energy Development Board),  Mr. Hammad Hashmi, CEO GENCO 2, Dr. Naveed Arshad, (Lahore University of Management Sciences Energy Institute), Dr. Fatima Khushnud (IPP Association), and Mr. Asim Ghaffar (Vice President LMKT). They discussed various approaches to bridge the gap between industry and academia, such as project-based internships, industry mentoring, joint research projects, training and capacity building, infrastructure sharing, and joint ventures.

The one-day meeting also featured over 15 research posters that showcasing cutting-edge energy work done by USPCAS-E faculty and their students at both UET Peshawar and NUST. Key stakeholders provided technical feedback on the research projects and noted any commercialization potential.