An SQU academician is among those honored at the fifth edition of the L’Oréal-Unesco ‘For Women in Science Middle East Fellowship’. Dr. Lamya Al Haj, Assistant Professor of Molecular Biology in the College of Science at Sultan Qaboos University was recognized at a ceremony held on Monday, 26 November along with four other extraordinary women from the GCC for their contribution to the field of science. The awards ceremony was hosted at the Hilton Dubai Al Habtoor City Hotel, in partnership with Zayed University.
Dr Lamya was honored for her two-streamed research on exploring second, third and fourth generation biofuels as clean and sustainable energy resources and investigating the potential of utilizing algae strains for the production of high-value products. Dr. Lamya Al Haj is developing high-value products from genetically-modified algae. With the world moving towards cleaner energy alternatives, Al Haj aims to reduce the dependency on conventional petroleum in Oman with identifying alternative sources that will help diversify the economy.
She envisions the first microalgae bio-refinery in Oman to use algae in generating biofuels and high value products. Part of her research investigates the potential of utilizing algae strains for the production of high-value products like antioxidants, superfoods, food supplements and drugs. The other part is focused on exploring second, third and fourth generation biofuels as sustainable energy sources. The research has made it to 10 publications, won several international awards and was the breakthrough in biofuel production in Oman.
L’Oréal-Unesco ‘For Women in Science Middle East Fellowship’program, which aims to promote gender equality and encourage more girls and women to become scientists, honors five laureates internationally each year. Dr. Lamya was granted Euros 20,000 fellowship in the Postdoc Researchers category.