Zewail City: 2015 in Review

At Zewail City, 2015 has been a busy year full of research, achievements, awards, and hard work. Zewail City community is eagerly looking forward to excellence in education and scientific research in 2016.

Today, we take a look back at our journey in 2015. To move forward with the City’s mission and goals, we started the year with the appointment of Prof. Salah Obayya as vice chair for academic affairs. Also, two internationally renowned figures have joined our Supreme Advisory Board (SAB) - Prof. Thomas F. Rosenbaum, president of California Institute of Technology (Caltech), USA, and Mr. Samih Sawiris, founder and chairman of Orascom Development Holding (ODH.SW), Egypt. By the end of the year, Prof. Abdelrahim Hassanien has been appointed as the new director of Center for Nanotechnology (CNT).

Throughout the year, we had many outstanding achievements in various areas:

University of Science and Technology

The university welcomed 150 outstanding new students in its third year. We attracted 26 STEM schools graduates, and five of the top achievers in Thanaweya Amma to join our university. All three cohorts comprising 530 students were selected carefully through our unique admission process.

As our admission process is merit-based, we have succeeded in offering financial aid to cover the tuition fees of 86% of the registered students in fall 2015, to make sure that we provide our exceptional students an equal opportunity to shine.

Our diverse student body represents all governorates of Egypt as well as most of the existing high school certificates, such as Thanaweya Amma, IGCSE, American Diploma, International Baccalaureate, French Baccalaureate, Abitur, Thanaweya Azhareya, and STEM schools.

We encourage our students to participate in national and international activities to have exposure as well as a full educational experience. In 2015, they achieved the first place in the Science Operations Leaders in Egypt (SOLE) competition that was held on September 12, 2015, at the Faculty of Agriculture, Ain Shams University, Egypt.

Also, Zewail City students advanced to Hult Prize regional finals that are scheduled in London, March 2016.They are looking forward to winning $ 1 million.


New Campus Development

The construction of the new campus in October Gardens district continues at a steady pace, implementing the needed infrastructure that supports our City’s vision and academic plans. Research facilities, classrooms, student housing, and a cultural center are being built on a total of 840,000 square meters to serve our ongoing commitment to Egypt’s scientific renaissance.


Scientific Research and Grants

Zewail City researchers and professors are working on a wide range of projects in basic and applied sciences. Since the City’s inauguration in November 2011 to date, they have published 214 papers in reputable and high-impact journals in nanotechnology, photonics, stem cells, genomics, medical sciences, nanoelectronics and devices, and fundamental physics. They also presented 268 papers in international conferences. At Zewail City, we believe that with high-quality scientific research and strategic studies we can solve real-world challenges and help elevate the livelihood of Egyptians.

Our scientists managed to secure 34 million EGP as grants for their research from national and international organizations.



At Zewail City we realize the importance of working with colleagues in other scientific organizations in Egypt and around the world, to be able to address many issues on both local and global level. Our faculty and researchers are involved in various interdisciplinary projects across a network of national and international organizations in many fields, such as, genomics, nanotechnology, material sciences, stem cells, cancer therapy, renewable energy, smart materials, Fundamental physics, etc.

Here are some examples for national and international collaborations.

National Collaborations Examples:

  • Ain Shams University
  • American University in Cairo (AUC)
  • Azhar University
  • Banha University
  • Cairo University
  • German University in Cairo (GUC)
  • Heliopolis University
  • Mansoura University
  • Magdi Yacoub Foudation (MYF)
  • National Institute of Laser Enhanced Sciences (NILES), Cairo University
  • Tanta University
  • Urology and Nephrology Center, Mansoura University

International Collaborations Examples:

  • Aston University, U.K.
  • Brunel University, U.K.
  • CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, CMS Experiment
  • City University London, U.K.
  • Kyoto University, Japan
  • Linz Institute for Organic Solar Energy (LIOS), Austria
  • Politecnico Di Bari , Italy
  • St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, U.S.
  • Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Switzerland
  • University of California, San Diego, U.S.
  • University of Oxford, U.K.
  • University of Sheffield, U.K.
  • University of South Wales, U.K.
  • University of Sussex, U.K.
  • University of Tunis El Manar, Tunisia


Awards and Recognitions

Our faculty have received several national and international awards for their scientific contributions:

1. Prof. Salah Obayya, vice chair for academic affairs, received the Arab Creativity Award 2015 for Science from the Arab Thought Foundation. He was also awarded the Doctor of Science degree from City University London, UK. He will receive the award during the university’s Graduation Ceremony in January 2016.

2. Prof. Shaaban Khalil, director of the Center for Fundamental Physics (CFP), has been selected to join the Basic Sciences Research Council, affiliated with the Academy of Scientific Research and Technology (ASRT).

3. ASRT announced the winners of the 2014 individuals and authorities prizes. Zewail City scientists, Prof. Ibrahim El-Sherbiny, Dr. Ahmed Maarouf, and Dr. Mohamed Farahat were named among the recipients of the ASRT awards this year.

4. Prof. Sherif El-Khamisy, director of the Center for Genomics (CG), received the 2014 Abdul Hameed Shoman Award for Arab Researchers in Medical and Health Sciences. The award recognizes the valuable research undertaken by El-Khamisy in the field of upscale molecular genetics. He also received the Wellcome Trust Investigator Award.

5. Prof. Ahmed Zewail awarded tenure positions to three faculty members for the first time in the history of Zewail City. The selected faculty are Prof. Salah Obayya, vice chair for academic affairs, Prof. Shaaban Khalil, director of the Center for Fundamental Physics (CFP), Prof. Ibrahim El-Sherbiny, co-director of the Center for Materials Science (CMS). They were honored for their significant contributions to their academic disciplines, excellence in teaching, and leadership on campus.

With the hard work and dedication of Egyptians, Zewail City believes that “Egypt Can”. We will continue our pursuit of excellence in research and education into 2016 to propel our beloved country to world leadership in science.


Distinguished Lectures

At Zewail City of Science and Technology, we seek to broaden the educational experience of our students through a series of lectures presented by influential people in the different fields of science and knowledge. The Distinguished Lecture Series aims to spread powerful ideas and experience among our students through thought-provoking discussions and debates in a wide range of topics. Sir Magdi Yacoub, Prof. Mostafa El-Sayed, Prof. Mohamed Ghoneim, Prof. Ahmed Okasha, and many other nationally and internationally renowned figures, came to Zewail City to share their insights, life experience, and knowledge with Zewail City community.

In 2015, Dr. Mohammed Aboulghar, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, visited our premises to give an insightful lecture titled “Assisted reproduction: A new era in the field of medicine”.

Also Dr. Essam Sharaf, professor of road engineering at Cairo University, visited Zewail City of Science and Technology where he addressed students and faculty members. Titled “Dream to Reality through Science,” Sharaf’s talk focused on the important role that science plays in shaping the future.


Events Highlights