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  • Saudi Arabia's sprawling megacity, Neom, is billed as a chance to live in the "new future."
  • Officials want to fill 262 vacancies. The unusual roles show what it will take to run the city.
  • The responsibilities for one role involve creating a cheetah management plan.

Saudi Arabia is pushing ahead with its ambitious plans for Neom, a futuristic metropolis spread across 26,500 km² in the northwestern region of Tabuk.

First announced in 2017, Neom is the flagship project of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's Vision 2030 — an initiative to diversify Saudi Arabia's economy and reduce its reliance on oil revenues.

If construction goes to plan, Neom will include Oxagon, an octagonal port city; Sindalah, a luxury island resort; Trojena, a ski and adventure resort; and a tourism hub in the Gulf of Aqaba.

But the centerpiece of Neom is The Line — a planned zero-carbon city of two huge mirrored skyscrapers that extend 170 km across Tabuk.

Officials say Neom will be a "cognitive city." The idea is similar to a smart city, but expands on the concept. In this case, the idea is to use tech such as AI and robotics to provide an optimum experience for residents.

But once — or if — Neom is finally up and running, it will require a whole slate of unusual jobs to fulfill its vision as a revolutionary city.

Recruitment is already underway.

"Join us on a journey of visionary minds where you seek to understand, embrace culture, make a difference, and create a legacy," the project's jobs board invites prospective candidates.

There were 262 vacancies on Neom's website at the time of writing. Some would be common in any city planning project:

  • construction manager,
  • engineer,
  • digital marketing web ops, and,
  • maybe at a stretch, golf course design manager.

Other roles required to run Neom suggest just how futuristic, and perhaps a little dystopian, the city could be.

Tech services and system manager

Though it sounds like a standard tech job, this role is a managerial position for the NEOM Community School. Candidates for Arabic and Islamic teachers, music teachers, and an "individuals and societies teacher" are also wanted for the city's wide-ranging education system.

The school is part of the wider Neom U project, a vast education arm that appears to be crucial to the city's vision as a hub of research and innovation.

Neom is also searching for someone to fill of "head of student attraction role."

Job responsibilities include "ensuring that Neom is considered to be the most attractive place to live and work" and preparing the "brightest young minds" for careers within Neom.

Director of personalized health

Officials say The Line aims to prioritize its citizens' health and well-being over transportation and infrastructure and it will "harness innovative technology" to do so.

The personalized health director is expected to play a crucial role in delivering those promises by "steering and defining Neom's strategy for integrating genetics into personalized healthcare."

The job description says genetic data will be used to pinpoint health risks and develop health interventions.

It's unclear whether providing your genetic data will be a requirement for living in Neom. However, some experts have raised ethical issues about the plans, warning that Neom could become part of a sweeping surveillance program.

Water mobility station professional

Advanced, zero-emission transport systems are core to Neom's strategy; and the project's waterside estates, Oxagon and Sindalah, are planned to be equally futuristic.

The water mobility station professional is a role on offer for those willing to oversee the smooth running of Neom's "water mobility station," or in other words, boat services.

While this job doesn't seem to differ that much from traditional marina management, you'll need to speak fluent Arabic and English and be prepared to handle autonomous, futuristic vessels.

Aquaculture fish laboratory and biosecurity professional

Not a job that most cities deem to be a requirement, the aquaculture fish laboratory and biosecurity professional was one of the more unexpected roles on offer at Neom.

The chosen candidate will control and operate the fish laboratory, ensuring high standards of fish welfare and supporting surveillance and investigation activities into fish health and disease control.

The role falls in line with Neom's sustainability ambitions, where humanity progresses without damaging the health of the planet.

Plus, a thriving fish population would also support diving tourism. Developers have said they want the island resort Sindalah to act as an "exclusive gateway to the stunning Red Sea."

Lead rewilding

Another job that highlights Neom's supposed ecological considerations is lead rewilding.

This job requires someone willing to get involved in Neom's "trophic rewilding strategy." They will help build wildlife corridors, monitor species, and conduct vegetation assessments in order to "address historical degradation that left the land in a desolated state." Neom

Perhaps the best job offered at Neom, the lead rewilding hire will develop and implement a cheetah introduction and management plan.

Those with a degree in conservation, ecology, natural sciences, or a related field can step forward.

Despite Neom's proclaimed efforts towards environmental protection, some have criticized the treatment of people who have reportedly been driven from the construction site.

In May 2023, three men from the Howeitat tribe were charged with terrorism and sentenced to death for resisting evictions in the area where Neom is being developed.

Neom officials did not immediately respond to BI's request for comment.


Autor(en)/Author(s): Polly Thompson

Quelle/Source: Business Insider India, 12.05.2024

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