Former Ph.D./MBA Students: Where are They Now?

Rania Al-Shami (DuBiotech - Dubai, United Arab Emirates)

My job at DuBiotech utilizes my scientific and business background on a daily basis. The company is literally establishing an industry and a culture of Life Science that did not exist here until now. Being part of a small management team, I am involved in every aspect of establishing the park. From giving feedback on building designs, lab designs and functionality to helping with preparing the park strategy and sales strategy, I am able to utilize many of the concepts I learned during my MBA education and apply them to an industry that is very challenging and very unique in its components, regulations and dynamics such as the Biotech and Pharma industry.

My main function in the team is to work on special projects. Specifically, I am the manager of the Scientific Investment committee which is responsible for reviewing proposals submitted from companies for a joint venture with DuBiotech. In this capacity, I routinely receive and review comprehensive business plans. I am responsible for reviewing the scientific information and data presented in the proposal and assessing the feasibility of the project and the profitability of the investment. The process is a very elaborate analysis of the opportunity that requires a strong scientific training which I had acquired from my Ph.D. and also an understanding in Business which my MBA had provided me with. I am also responsible for proposing revenue-generating, knowledge-building projects to the management at DuBiotech. This entails that I prepare a detailed business plan, which once approved I would have to implement following our company's process until the proposal materializes into a new entity. I am also involved in identifying Tier one universities that DuBiotech is interested in attracting to the park and negotiating the terms and conditions of the potential collaboration/partnership with those universities.