Human Capital Need Assessment and Value Chain Capture in Renewable Energy Sector in UAE

  • Thilanka Maduwanthi Sooriyaarachchi

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


With the growing concerns on depletion of fossil fuels, carbon foot-print and climate change, setting Renewable Energy (RE) Targets and deploying renewable energy technologies are adopted by many countries nowadays. The United Arab Emirates (UAE), an oil based economy, needs to have an energy mix strategy to include alternative energy sources not only to meet the growing domestic energy demands, but also to secure its economy through reducing domestic oil consumption. The UAE has declared its RE target as 7% in Abu Dhabi by 2020 and 5% in Dubai by 2030. This thesis will present a qualitative assessment of the attractiveness and feasibility of UAE, to enter different parts of value chains of different RE technologies. Then, a human capital needs assessment is done to quantify the number of potential jobs and the required skills for those jobs - when achieving the set RE target of the UAE, through the analysis of value chain in different RE technologies: Solar PV, CSP and Wind. A system dynamic model is developed to identify the related dynamics between the three pillars of RE readiness: the availability of human capital, infrastructure and institutions and their effect on the RE deployment of the country and hence on the RE sector job creation potential. It was observed that, if the UAE is to achieve the set RE capacity within the targeted timeline, development of human capital, institutions and infrastructure need to be carried out simultaneously. Although UAE currently does not have any RE manufacturing capacity target, it was observed that the UAE has number of already established domestic industries which are complementary to RE manufacturing, which would help if the UAE is to invest in developing domestic RE manufacturing. The study revealed that, the UAE can expect to generate 22,000 26,000 jobs in RE sector by 2030 including manufacturing jobs.
Date of AwardMay 2014
Original languageAmerican English
SupervisorToufic Mezher (Supervisor)


  • Renewable Energy Sources; Energy policy; United Arab Emirates.

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