Qatar is growing rapidly due to its hydrocarbon resources and is among global leaders in GDP per capita and international competitiveness. It has developed extensive physical infrastructure, education and health systems, while retaining its rich cultural heritage. However, there are challenges. Industrial development has increased Qatar's use of energy and other resources, raising concerns about environmental quality. Other challenges include: balancing development with traditional values; raising living standards for all Qataris; and increasing the labor force participation rate of Qataris (Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics [MDPS] 2015). Addressing these latter social challenges are crucial to the Qatarization process.
Qatar's leadership has responded through "a vision of Qatar developing sustainably and evolving into a knowledge-based economy" (Kalra 2011 p.1). Thus, Qatar National Vision 2030 (and the National Development Strategy 2011-2016 emphasize managing natural resources conservatively, boosting industrial productivity, and enhancing education, health and cultural institutions. Hence, Qatar is now one of the top countries in the world in terms of quality of life and the Human Development Index (HDI). Such successes are proof of Porter's 2004 maxim that:
National prosperity is strongly affected by competitiveness, which is the productivity with which a nation uses its human, capital, and natural resources. (p.50)
Becker (2002) has labeled the 21st Century as "the age of human capital" because "human capital is by far the most important form of capital in modern economies" (p.3). This study will deliver evidence-based policy advice and guidelines for enriching the human capital of Qatar to help address key human resource related barriers to achieving the goals of Qatar National Vision 2030. This research will result in the identification of a Qatari perspective on necessary 21st Century skills and strategies for their integration into policy and practice in the TVET and higher education sectors, thus positioning Qatar as a regional leader in modern human capital formation.