Gulf countries like the United Arab Emirates and Qatar are not only transforming their economies, but their landscapes. Some of the effects are dubious as Dubai as paved over huge swathes of the desert. It remains to be seen whether Doha’s The Pearl will take off or just become another collection of McMansions floating above the water.

But the amazing architecture in both cities is impressive and is starting to rival European capitals and Asian mega-cities like Tokyo and Seoul. What is unfolding in Qatar is impressive when you consider the massive sums of money that this country is investing in higher education. The results are impressive academic settings in an inspirational setting.

Education City, in the outskirts of Doha, hosts satellite campuses from around the globe. The complex is so huge that you need a car to see everything. My time there a few weeks back was limited, but I was still gobsmacked by everything I saw. The buildings that house Carnegie Mellon University, Texas A&M and the posh student center are breathtaking. Anyone walking through these temples of learning would be inspired to go back to school.

Enjoy the pictures. The modern take on Middle East design in the student center courtyard is especially wowing.

Texas A&M University entrance

Texas A&M University entrance

Interior Facade, Carnegie Mellon University

Interior Facade, Carnegie Mellon University

Courtyard, Education City Student Centre

Courtyard, Education City Student Centre

Atrium, Carnegie Mellon University

Atrium, Carnegie Mellon University

Hillary Clinton recently lectured here at CMU

Hillary Clinton recently lectured here at CMU

Cafeteria, Student Centre at Education City, Doha

Cafeteria, Student Centre at Education City, Doha

Read about the sustainability agenda in Dubai, an hour's flight away, must start with public health on Triple Pundit.

About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of GreenGoPost.com. Based in California, he is a business writer and consultant. His work is has also appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. He's pictured here in Qatar, one of the Middle East countries in which he takes a keen interest because of its transformation into a post-oil economy. Other areas of interest include sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (@LeonKaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). As of October 2013, he now lives and works in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.