Research activities have not been highlighted in the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC), before 2001, when a Research & Industrial Standards Section, a subsection of the Engineering Directorate, used to be the research administrator but mainly focusing on standardization affairs of the company.
Since early 2001, department of Research & Development Affairs has been established and commenced working on organizing and developing research activities; the department remained in charge until Jan. 2003. At this point, relying on the new approaches adopted by the Ministry of Petroleum policies aimed at focusing on the paramount importance of research and the scope of the activities, Research & Technology Directorate has been established in the NIGC.
Passing through the initial stages, the NIGC Research & Technology Directorate has entered a new phase of planning and policy making to meet the organizational goals. In a bid to achieve the objectives outlined in the 20-year perspective plan, whereby Iran is considered as the "first-in-technology" in the region, and to pursue the goals formulated in the development plans of the state gas industry, which is called "pivot of development" due to its leading role and ever increasing growth, devising detailed plans, creating an effective management system and exploitation of full potentials are indispensable. Seeking the industrialists' approval, the R&T Directorate conducts researches for the gas industry development while attempts to prove the important role of research in the arena of the state gas industry.
In line with its ultimate goals, the R&T Directorate keeps the following plans and strategies high on the agenda:
• To institutionalize research activities as a drive to develop the state gas industry;
• To formulate objectives, policies, and strategic plans for promoting research and technology activities of the state gas industry;
• To study on different guidelines so as to access new technologies being applied for qualitatively and quantitatively enhanced research activities;
• To monitor the establishment of research centers of the subsidiary companies and oversee their research activities;
• To develop interactions with universities and research centers in line with conducting the required research studies
• To develop specialized information systems in the state gas industry
Here is the new structure of the Research & Technology Directorate of NIGC:
• Research, Development, and Technology Affairs
• Standardization Affairs
• Post Graduate Education and Academic Communications
• Planning & Projects Control
• Technical & Industrial Research Labs
• Research Information Center
Furthermore, R&T Directorate is mainly responsible to make policies and administer research activities carried out in the subsidiary companies and operational affiliates.