By Dr. Yasser Medhat Abdelrahman (Cairo Univ., Egypt)

Rushdi Said is widely considered to be one of the most accomplished Egyptian geologists. He was born in Cairo on 1920 in a middle-class family with roots from Assiut. He attended Cairo University in 1937 as an undergraduate student in the Faculty of Science from which he graduated in 1941 with honors then he was appointed as a demonstrator in the same faculty. He began teaching geology in Cairo University in 1951 after returning from a scientific mission in the University of ZurichSwitzerland. He was one the first Egyptian scientists who received their Doctorate degree from Harvard University, more than 60 years ago.

Rushdi served as a professor at Cairo University from 1950 until 1968. During that time Rushdi was honored by the late Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser in 1962, who awarded him the Order of Sciences and Arts, First Class. Then, he was appointed as the chairman of the board of the Egyptian Mining and Geological Research Organization (1968–1977). He played a major role in the development of the organization with the new mining discoveries. Before leaving Egypt in 1981 to Washigton DC, Rushdi was involved in politics in the sixties and seventies as a member of the People's Assembly and also as a member in the International Parliamentary Union.

Among his prominent scientific contributions

·         Rushdi was unique in choosing to specialize in the subject of geology of Egypt. He wrote a book on this topic which won the admiration of the scientists worldwide and became a recognized reference on a local level and globally.

·         He is also an expert in irrigation and he wrote books and articles on agriculture. That is because he was dedicated to understand the Nile and to use it in achieving the renaissance of Egypt and the development of the Egyptian Population.

·         Dr. Rushdi Said worked on the development of the Western Desert and transferring it to a useful territory. Thus, he suggested linking the Western Sahara with the Nile Valley to a network of transport and communications. It is proposed to stay within the area north of the Western Sahara and is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea from the north and Qattara Depression and the Siwa Oasis from the south. This vast area has a mild climate, flat topography and proximity to areas of energy of natural gas and centers of urbanization and the sea that can be used in the cooling water in many industries.

·         He was also awarded the 2003 leadership of the American Association of Petroleum Geology, in recognition of his scientific work on the geology of Egypt and the Middle East, which opened up new horizons for the application of this science in the search for oil in the region.

During his remarkable career, Rushdi Said wrote and shared in many books not only on geology of Egypt but also on the life way of the Egyptians.

·         Foraminifera of the Northern Red Sea(1949)

·         The Geological Survey of Egypt, 1896-1971(Ministry of Industry, Petroleum and Mineral Wealth, Egyptian Geological Survey and Mining Authority, 1971)

·         Explanatory Notes to Accompany the Geological Map of Egypt(Ministry of Industry, Petroleum, and Mineral Wealth, Geological Survey of Egypt and Mining Authority, 1971)

·         Subsurface Geology of Cairo area(1975)

·         The Geological Evolution of the River Nile(Springer-Verlag, 1981)

·         The Geology of Egypt(Elsevier, 1962 & 1990)

·         The River Nile: Geology, Hydrology and Utilization(Pergamon, 1993)

·         al- aqiqah wa-al-wahm fi al-waqi al-Misri(Dār al-Hilāl, 1996)

·         Rilat Umr(Dār al-Hilāl, 2000)

·         Science and Politics in Egypt: A Life’s Journey (American University in Cairo Press, 2004)