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Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (C4IR KSA)

Shaping the future through policy, partnership, foresight, and education

What is C4IR?

The Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution in Saudi Arabia is a do tank to advance the benefits of 4IR in Saudi Arabia through the development and implementation of practical and adaptive protocols for the governance of emerging technologies.

C4IR KSA is one of many WEF Affiliate centers around the globe that form the C4IR Network, connecting centers across the globe to catalyze international collaborative efforts towards concrete multi stakeholder output for the development and testing of scalable technology governance frameworks.

Hosted by: King AbdulAziz City for Science and Technology

Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution KSA


Accelerate the development and implementation of governance principles, policies, and protocols for the emerging science and technology of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.


Work with the public and private sectors, academia, and civil society to co-create, co-design and pilot new approaches for the adoption and governance of 4IR technologies.


Prepare national talents to be future-ready with hands-on international experience to develop key 4IR governance skills through C4IR KSA fellowship opportunities.


Projects Area

  • Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
  • Urban Transformation
  • Blockchain and Digital Assets
  • Data Policy

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

Accelerating the societal benefits of artificial intelligence and machine learning while ensuring equity, privacy, transparency, accountability and social impact.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a key driver of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Its effect can be seen in homes, businesses, schools and even public spaces, enabling advances in autonomous driving, energy efficiency, and even facilitating better care for the young and elderly. AI holds the promise of solving some of society’s most pressing issues, but also presents challenges such as inscrutable “black box” algorithms, unethical use of data and potential job displacement.

As rapid advances in machine learning (ML) increase the scope and scale of AI’s deployment across all aspects of daily life, multistakeholder collaboration is required to optimize accountability, transparency, privacy and impartiality to create trust.

This Platform brings together key stakeholders from the public and private sectors to co-design, test and implement policy frameworks that accelerate the benefits and mitigate the risks of AI and ML.

Urban Transformation

Mobilizing global action for more inclusive and sustainable cities.

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to rethink the way we live. It is transforming industries and how we do business. It is intensifying social and environmental crises in our communities. And it is challenging fundamental assumptions and global trends, such as urbanization, that have cemented over more than 200 years since the First Industrial Revolution.

As the world prepares to build back stronger and better, we have new tools available to support this effort. A growing suite of connected devices and smart technologies, commonly referred to as the internet of things (IoT), offers a means to reimagine and transform physical spaces—our homes, offices, factories, farms, healthcare facilities and public spaces—to be more adaptive, customized and even anticipate new needs before they arise. New models for public-private cooperation and shared community services are also changing the way in which cities provide services to residents and business, blurring the lines between government and the private sector.

Blockchain and Digital Assets

Ensuring equity, interoperability, transparency and trust in the governance of distributed ledger technology – and accelerating the necessary changes for this technology to reach its full potential.

Blockchain, an early-stage technology enabling the decentralized and secure storage and transfer of information, could become a powerful tool for tracking and transactions that can minimize friction, reduce corruption, increase trust and empower users. While still nascent, cryptocurrencies built on distributed ledger technologies (DLT) have emerged as potential gateways to new wealth creation and disrupters across financial markets. Other revolutionary use cases are being explored in almost every sector, ranging from energy and shipping to media. DLT has the potential to transform entire systems, but it also faces challenges, including lack of interoperability, security threats, centralization of power and unwillingness to experiment due to recent overhype.

A systemic and inclusive approach to this technology can help ensure that everyone – from the most marginalized members of society to the most powerful – benefits from its transformative potential.

This Platform works with Partners and Members to advance a systemic and inclusive approach to governing DLT, to ensure that everyone can benefit from this powerful technology.

Data Policy

Data is at the heart of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. In a time of global crisis and economic uncertainty, its management, use and sharing are crucial for the resilience of economies and progress of societies.

The Forum’s Platform on Data Policy aims to unlock the value of data for all by increasing collaboration, developing policy and strengthening action across data ecosystems.

This Platform achieves impact through three pillars of work:

  • Shaping the Data Economy – aims to grow global GDP 5% by 2030 by advancing cross-border and cross-sector cooperation around data collection, use and transfer with a focus on incorporating private sector into intergovernmental dialogues on overcoming barriers to cross-border data flows.
  • Data for Government and Industry Transformation – supports key stakeholders in the global digital economy to accelerate their responsible transformation, with a focus on government Chief Data Officers, SMEs and frontier industries like biotechnologies and the metaverse.
  • Data for Public Goods – global network developing and building new approaches to data sharing to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals; currently working on improving food security, protecting ocean health and advancing affordable and clean energy.

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KACST, Innovation Tower, Al Raed, 12354, Riyadh, KSA