Research & Development


Diamond Developers is committed to spreading the knowledge and research required to make sustainability more accessible across the world.


Diamond Developers is proud to promote the transferal of knowledge through our knowledge arm SEE Institute. We share our skills and expertise to support businesses, communities and the wider world in their goal to operate sustainably. And in doing so, we strive to bring growth and betterment to the region and the world.


SEE Institute is the Research & Development arm of Diamond Developers, promoting low carbon living in cities and accelerate climate action through professional training, public education, events and special projects

After building the first fully sustainable development of its kind in the world, The Sustainable City became a platform for performance monitoring, testing, and knowledge sharing. The benefits of a living lab became apparent to the project team, who decided since the design phase to integrate an innovation centre in The Sustainable City master plan.

The innovation center will become a superhighway for information related to sustainability and the built environment. Programmatically, the centre will examine social, environmental, and economic sustainability and delve into issues and options that impact sustainability.

Research & Development

Research and development is an essential requirement to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and the objectives of the Paris Agreement. SEE Institute manages a range of cutting edge research programs that focus on sustainability and the built environment.

Sustainability Research & Training Program (SRTP)

On February 10, 2014, Diamond Developers, United Arab Emirates and the Regents of the University of California, Davis Campus, entered into a 5-year Master Collaboration Agreement.

The agreement was ceremonially re-signed in Dubai on March 26, 2014. On April 15, 2018, the agreement was granted an extension through February 9, 2020.

The SRTP released three calls for proposals, all focused on various aspects of sustainability.

The first (2014) focused on technical aspects of sustainability; the second (2015) on social aspects of sustainability; and the third (2016), on the integration of both.

The following Universities from the Middle East participate in the SRTP:

Living Lab

Under our Living Lab program, SEE Institute manages several and on-going pilot projects. Working in collaboration with industry partners, The Sustainable City has become a destination for many emerging technologies and practices. These projects, whether related to food, energy, water, mobility, or waste, can have a profound impact on how we design future cities or retrofit existing cities.



Supporting our commitment towards clean mobility solutions, SEE Nexus Institute has deployed and tested the first autonomous driverless shuttle in a residential community in the UAE at The Sustainable City, in a collaboration with Dubai’s Road and Transport Authority (RTA). This pilot project is on-going and will produce valuable data on end-user perception and acceptance of autonomous transportation.



In an exciting move to increase the variety of fresh fruits and vegetables on offer at The Sustainable City, SEE Nexus Institute has partnered with Agricool to deploy a state of the art of a vertical farming Cooltainer, to produce strawberries under a controlled environment. Powered by renewable energy from The Sustainable City, the strawberries will be grown using zero pesticides, zero GMO’s and will require zero transport, from farm to table.



Further enhancing the renewable energy capabilities of The Sustainable City, SEE Nexus Institute has partnered with ENGIE and Heliatek to deploy and test organic thin film technologies in the city, which will complement conventional solar PV. This pilot project produces live data which feeds into the city’s sustainability dashboard; allowing the SEE Nexus Institute to monitor and optimise performance, drive improvements and savings.



In support of The Sustainable City’s urban farm success story, SEE Nexus has deployed The Farm Bot. A mechanical arm which prepares and manages a plot from seeding to watering. This is first and foremost educational, by demonstrating how robotics and mechanization can support small scale urban farming systems.



Learning from the successes and challenges of the PV solar installations in The Sustainable City we are currently using 100% bio diesel (B100) to power the construction machinery in Phase 2 of the development. Made from Used Cooking Oil, B100 has a much lower carbon footprint than conventional diesel and also reduces air pollutants.

Solar Decathlon 2018

  • Diamond Developers has partnered with Heriot-Watt University for the Middle East Solar Decathlon 2018. Organized by DEWA, this international competition was hosted at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai (November 14-29, 2018).

  • We are lending technical support to the group of students leading the design and construction effort. Called ORA (O= Organic, R= Resilient, A= Adaptable), the 100 m2 house will deploy smart and efficient technologies to showcase what the future may bring. Solar Decathlon is a collegiate competition of 10 contests that challenge students to design and build solar-powered houses.

Greenhouse Gas Inventory

  • Our commitment to 2 degrees has produced the first greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory for The Sustainable City. Prepared in accordance with The Global Protocol for Community-Scale Greenhouse Gas Emission Inventories guidelines, and independently verified by Dubai Carbon Centre of Excellence, this inventory covers the period from January 1 to December 31, 2017.

  • During this period, villa occupancy increased steadily, and commercial activities expanded. The emissions captured in this inventory include grid electricity consumption, fuel combustion, waste water treatment, refrigerant leakage, water consumption, intra-city transport, urea application, solid waste disposal, and enteric emissions. The inventory also includes emissions from electricity and fuel consumption at the under-construction Phase 2 of The Sustainable City. The total emissions from The Sustainable City during 2017 were 8,761 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide equivalent (tCO2e). To read more, CLICK HERE.

  • The inventory has produced a set of policy recommendations that would reduce the carbon footprint of communities. These recommendations pertain to renewable energy, transportation, waste management, and data access.

Professional Training

We offer a range of training programs, either face-to-face, blended, or online. Training programs are delivered by us or jointly with our partners.  Our training programs are aligned with the development model and scope of The Sustainable City, with Environment as the main focus.

The goal of each training program is to build sustainability related knowledge and skills that are directly relevant to the workplace of the course participant.

A typical course consists of a total of 20 learning hours, including one or two seminars in our facility in The Sustainable City.

We also co-host a growing number of courses with training and education partners including Solar Energy International (SEI), and Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). Our training programs are hosted on Canvas, a cloud-based Learning Management System. Certificates of completion (for courses with assignments) or participation are issued by SEE Institute. The Institute is licensed by Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority and the Dubai Department of Economic Development.

A typical course includes the following topics:

  • Overview of sustainability (social, environmental, and economic) and climate change

  • Relevance of sustainability and climate change to the workplace of the course participant

  • Definition of strategies and actions that the participant can implement at work to promote sustainable practices in the organization.

Our flagship courses include:

  • 101 Sustainability and the Built Environment (General)

  • 101.1 Sustainability in Education

  • 101.2 Sustainability in the Office

  • 101.3 Sustainability in the Community

  • 101.4 Sustainability for Journalists and Media Professionals

  • 201 Sustainability and the Built Environment

  • 201 Urban Farming

Future courses will include:

  • 201 Energy Management

  • 201 Waste Management

  • 201 Promoting a Culture of Sustainability

We also co-host a growing number of courses with training and education partners including Solar Energy International (SEI), and Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). Our training programs are hosted on Canvas, a cloud-based Learning Management System. Certificates of completion (for courses with assignments) or participation are issued by SEE Institute. The Institute is licensed by Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority and the Dubai Department of Economic Development.

Music & Arts

SEE Institute embraces music and arts, our universal language! We have set up a functional music center, which is run by our dedicated musician and teacher, Ahmad Radaideh.

The music center offers lessons in a variety of musical instruments and for all age groups. It also organizes unique musical performances in The Sustainable City and beyond, in collaboration with Emirates Community Symphonic Orchestra (ECSO) and other leading organizations. The Sustainable City will be launching an Art Studio, in partnership with “designbymariska”.

The art activities will explore waste products and inspire artists how to turn trash into treasure. The studio will be based in Bloc B, near the music center, thereby creating an enchanting indoor and outdoor space, leading to The Sustainable Plaza.

Schools Program

SEE Institute is hosting The Sustainable City’s SEEd program. Sustainability and Environmental Education (SEEd) aims to promote an understanding of environmental sustainability through education. Our goal is to inspire students so they, in turn, become stewards of our environment.

Educators of students from nursery through to university are able to choose from a number of activities and experiences including guided tours and hands-on workshops. Our programs support students by inviting them to view real-life applications of the material they’ve learned in school.
For more information and booking:

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