KFAS News

KFAS launches Innovation Challenge 2018 in collaboration with UCLA A unique executive education program for private sector companies

September 11, 2017

KFAS launched the fourth season of its Executive Education Program (Innovation Challenge 2018); this year in collaboration with the Executive Education Center at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Anderson School of Business, targeting mid level executives and talented Kuwaitis working in the private sector.

The Innovation Challenge which comes within the foundations’ main objectives to encourage science, technology and innovation in the private sector,  introduces local companies to successful international experiences that in turn will them develop and enhance their operations.

In a press conference held at the Foundation’s headquarters, Dr Salem Al Hajraf, Deputy Director General for Scientific Affairs at the Foundation stated that "The Innovation Challenge 2018 program will be taught by distinguished faculty members of the Executive Education Center at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Anderson School of Business. The program will also offer participants a unique opportunity to learn about the experiences of young business leaders who have successfully contributed to the development of their companies, which will prepare participants and empower them with creativity and innovation that lead to success.”

Al Hajraf said that this year the program would host 10 teams representing 10 Kuwaiti corporations, chosen through a clear evaluation process. Selected teams will go through a training period where they will be coming up with innovative solutions to real challenges faced by each of their companies. The foundation encourages Kuwaiti corporations to make the most of this program and nominate eligible mid – level Kuwaiti employees.  Nomination is done through the Foundation’s website and open until Sunday October 22nd 2017.

Al Hajraf added that KFAS would cover the costs of the program, which includes a series of workshops given by experts and academics. Most of them will be held in Kuwait, while the last part will take place in Los Angeles where participants will visit companies that have successfully cultivated a culture of innovation, such as Disney and Snapchat.

Furthermore, Al Hajraf explained that this is quite a unique program in the region with its adaptation of the latest learning methods and practices. These include practical and scientific studies of renowned startups that began as creative ideas that later took over the world and became amongst the biggest companies worldwide.

Through simulation, comparative studies and distance learning, the program will focus on maximizing the learning experience of participants and broadening their horizons. This will positively influence their workplace when they return as well as the Kuwaiti private sector altogether.

Participants will be empowered with the skills and expertise needed to become innovative leaders in their respective fields making them capable of overcoming potential obstacles they might face in their professional careers.

Over the past three years (2015 in collaboration with the University of Berkeley, California, 2016 in collaboration with Cambridge Judge Business School, 2017 in collaboration with the Royal College of Arts, London), 113 participants representing diverse financial, commercial and industrial entities went through the program successfully and got exclusive training in Kuwait and in renowned universities abroad.