The Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR) was established in 1967, by Japan's Arabian Oil Company Limited in partial fulfillment of its obligations under an oil concession agreement with the government of the State of Kuwait. The institute was established to carry out applied scientific research in three fields: petroleum, desert agriculture and marine biology.
1973: Restructured by an Amiri decree – became a Government Agency
KISR was restructured by an Amiri decree issued in 1973, under which it became directly responsible, via its Board of Trustees, to the Council of Ministers. The main objectives of the institute, as specified in the Amiri decree, were to carry out applied scientific research, especially that related to industry, energy, agriculture, and the national economy, to contribute to the economic and social development of the state and to advise the government on the country's scientific research policy.
1981: Declared a semi-autonomous public institution
In 1981, KISR's status was reviewed, and an Amiri decree(28) was issued to define KISR's objectives and reconfirm its role in the development of scientific research and technology in the country; the decree also specified the membership of the Board of Trustees for the governance of KISR. This decree emphasized additional research areas such as preservation of the environment; investigation of natural wealth; promotion of energy, water and food resources; and methods of agriculture exploitation. In addition, the law broadened the mission and entrusted the institute with undertaking research and scientific and technological consultations for both the governmental and the private sectors in Kuwait, the Arabian Gulf region and the Arab world, and encouraged collaboration with international institutes.
Since 1979 the institute has operated through five-year planning cycles with strategic plans that embodied key objectives:
- 1st, 1979 – 1984 Planned the managerial processes, research priorities and organizational structure
- 2nd, 1984 – 1989 Strengthened the focus of the core technical research programs through strategic recruiting and clear alignment with national development priorities
- 3rd, 1992 – 1995 Developed a transitional strategic program to rebuild the institute’s capacity in the aftermath of the Iraqi invasion
- 4th, 1995 – 2000 Aligned and prioritized national initiatives in collaboration with strategic stakeholders
- 5th, 2000 – 2005 Integrated advanced information technologies to support core research initiatives and national priorities
- 6th, 2005 – 2010 Building up the capacity of the staff and upgraded facilities
- 7th, 2010 –2015 KISR Transformation project: growing regional foot print and building world class niches.
- 8th, 2015 – 2020 Building international reputation
The 8th Strategic Plan continues the transformation started in the 7th Strategic Plan. Emphasis in this five-year plan will be placed on executing our research programs with distinction; developing our technical staff through training and recruiting; building stronger partnerships with national and international STI organizations; developing even closer relationships with our key clients and stakeholders; accelerating commercialization of our research outcomes; and completing the implementation of a series of process improvements designed to make KISR more efficient and the best place to work in Kuwait.
KISR is committed to achieving concrete results during this 5-year plan to:
- Advance science and technology in Kuwait.
- Promote growth of local industry.
- Help diversify energy production and increase efficiency in its use.
- Contribute to Kuwait’s important petroleum industry.
- Help protect our environment and its biodiversity.
- Assist in assuring that our built infrastructure is reliable and energy efficient.
- Contribute to meeting our growing need for water.
These accomplishments are aligned with the National Development Plan and represent our highest priorities. The vision of a “new KISR” developed in the 7th Strategic Plan is now becoming a reality.