This chapter presents a theoretical and evidence-based investigation of the contribution that national educational systems make to the development of and transition to a knowledge economy in the Arabian Gulf, generally, and Saudi Arabia, specifically. The challenges to creating an Arabian Gulf knowledge economy are twofold. One is a functional and structural challenge of developing a knowledge economy-oriented mass education system. The other is a cultural and contextual challenge of aligning Arabian Gulf expectations, traditions, and norms with institutionalized expectations for knowledge economies. The knowledge economy development challenge that is specific to national versus non-national Gulf populations, information and communication technology (ICT), and formal mass education systems is highlighted. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the role that national innovation systems play in knowledge economy development in the Arabian Gulf countries.