The leadership of this young nation, Saudi Arabia, is ably steering the country towards self-reliance in almost all spheres of life. They have vigorously embarked on bold new ventures embracing emerging technologies— only as can be expected from the chivalrous and daring.
However, ironical as it may seem, few of the existing local technology companies can claim to have the expertise and skills to single-handedly take upon projects involving implementation of emerging technologies like AI, Robotics, Block-chain, Machine Learning, IOT and the like. One does not need to have prescience to predict that unless these local tech giants re-invent themselves, there is little hope of them claiming a fair share of the pie, when the market matures and starts adopting these technologies in a big way, as is imminent.
“Unless the local tech giants re-invent themselves, there is little hope of them claiming a fair share of the pie, when the market matures and starts adopting these technologies in a big way”
To flourish, and to contribute meaningfully to their country’s endeavors to become self-reliant, existing technology companies in the Gulf must themselves orient their mission to become innovative and focus intensely on the trends and continuous developments in emerging technologies. They should set up research teams whose main focus should be to study existing and potential technology requirements in their own region, and the existing maturity levels of various sectors and potential customers. These young researchers will need also to study various use-cases of emerging technologies in other geographies, and analyse each use case’s suitability for application in their region, or otherwise. This team will also help shortlist appropriate technology partners with proven antecedents from around the globe. Leadership does not come cheap!
Identifying the Best of Breed
To those wishing to offer their technical expertise in emerging technologies in this region, especially Saudi Arabia, here is my two-cents: When it comes to pedigree, its not among Arabian horses alone that one needs to identify the best of breed. A thoroughbred is a thoroughbred, irrespective of the genus. In cultures and geographies where honour, chivalry, valour and integrity are of principal importance, societies are organized around people whose qualities of head and heart are proven beyond doubt. In such an environment, it makes perfect horse-sense to count on companies who have always blazed new trails in uncharted territory, and continue to retain a flawless track-record.
I look forward to your own perspectives on this exciting new subject. Please send your thoughts to email@example.com.