Nadia Shalaby, Alumni
- Egypt/United States
2011, MBA, Sloan Fellow
“Technology in and of itself is not the solution. The solution is the vision that brings technologies to make a substantial impact on the quality of lives - in many cases saving them. Who generates this vision? One person. Who executes this vision? Many people. Therefore, change, development and advancement is all about people.”
Breaking the value chain of photovoltaic solar panels by sourcing high quality polysilicon and manufacturing wafers, cells and panels in Egypt, resulting in a 30% cost reduction and allowing the government to pursue solar energy as a cost-efficient alternative. This enhances economic development by leveraging existing Egyptian industries and workforce skill set, and moves the country up the technology ladder.
Throughout my career, I straddled industry and academia, startups and large organizations, as I led small projects and large programs. My professional goal is to start and grow sustainable companies promoting green technologies, especially in the developing world. Although I had multitudes of academic opportunities to teach and perform research, I opted for more applied and entrepreneurial contributions, driven by my passion aligned with my values in wanting to make a lasting impact on our world.
I hold a Masters of Science from Alexandria University in Computer Science and a Ph.D. from Harvard University in Computer Science. My publications span multiple fields in computer science, including networking, distributed systems, and mobile environments. I have taught at Alexandria University, Harvard, and Princeton, and developed professional curricula for the World Heath Organization and USAID. In industry, I have had my own consulting company, worked in small startups, and led projects at BBN Technologies (now Raytheon).
Having spent most of my life advancing cutting-edge R&D technology, I am passionate about how technological advances can contribute to our society and the world as a whole. However, such high-end R&D in technology requires substantial resources that only leading economies can afford. As a result, developing countries, despite their human talent, are at a disadvantage, and tend to lose this talent to the developed world. I believe visionary and focused entrepreneurial projects in these developing countries, such as Egypt, can help transform the nation from consumer of technology to producer, breaking new ground. This vision represents a grass roots approach for a country to climb the economic ladder and enhance its development.