Dubai blazes a trail with in­au­gu­ral gath­er­ing in Cal­i­for­nia

Google and Uber among play­ers to be­come en­gaged

The National - News - Business - - Focus Technology - The Na­tional staff busi­ness@then­ with Dubai Fu­ture Foun­da­tion

A del­e­ga­tion of se­nior of­fi­cials from over 30 Dubai gov­ern­ment en­ti­ties were in the United States last month as part of Dubai 10X’s in­au­gu­ral outreach trip to Sil­i­con Val­ley.

Dubai 10X is an ini­tia­tive of the Dubai Fu­ture Foun­da­tion (DFF). The 10X pro­gramme is de­signed to en­able the Gov­ern­ment “to be 10 times faster, 10 times bolder, and 10 times more cre­ative”, ac­cord­ing to the DFF.

The of­fi­cials met top-tier dis­rup­tive com­pa­nies such as Google, Uber, Air­bus Labs, Au­todesk and many oth­ers to gain in­sight and ex­change ideas on best prac­tices for im­ple­ment­ing in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions.

In­no­va­tion is a ma­jor fo­cus across all UAE sec­tors to im­prove ser­vices for ci­ti­zens and res­i­dents, es­pe­cially young peo­ple.

In a re­cent speech at a Ma­jlis for Fu­ture Gen­er­a­tions, Sheikh Mo­hammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Com­man­der of the UAE Armed Forces, said: “Youth need to be bet­ter pre­pared for the pos­toil era.”

Launched at the 5th World Gov­ern­ment Sum­mit in 2017, Dubai 10X seeks to es­tab­lish “X Labs” in ev­ery gov­ern­ment en­tity, with the goal of putting Dubai 10 years ahead of other cities around the world in terms of tech­nol­ogy, gov­ern­ment ser­vices, health care, ed­u­ca­tion and more.

“The busi­ness of gov­ern­ment is to un­lock hu­man po­ten­tial,” said Mo­hammed Al Ger­gawi, UAE Min­is­ter for Cabi­net Af­fairs and the Fu­ture, and the vice chair­man and man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of the DFF.

“We are ea­gerly reach­ing out to build bridges be­tween global thought lead­ers and tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies in Sil­i­con Val­ley and our coun­try’s in­no­va­tion task force for knowl­edge ex­change and shar­ing of best prac­tices.”

Yousef Al Otaiba, the UAE Am­bas­sador to the United States high­lighted the pos­i­tive im­pact of in­no­va­tion fo­cused outreach trips and part­ner­ships.

“Ini­tia­tives like Dubai 10X, Dubai Fu­ture Foun­da­tion and Mas­dar are de­signed to build bridges be­tween the best tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies in the world – many of which are in the United States – and our UAE gov­ern­ment de­part­ments,” Mr Al Otaiba said. “Our coun­try has be­come the best plat­form for dis­rup­tive tech­nol­ogy and ideas that over­lap with reg­u­la­tions and poli­cies to ad­vance in­no­va­tion.”

The am­bas­sador’s se­nior ad­viser on in­no­va­tion, Ruba Al Has­san, said the 10X visit to Cal­i­for­nia had re­vealed the grow­ing fo­cus US com­pa­nies have on this coun­try. “What we have seen … is that Amer­i­can tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies are more and more in­ter­ested to come to the UAE to part­ner with our Gov­ern­ment to test new tech­nol­ogy and be­come part of this great vi­sion that …[the UAE] has to ac­cel­er­ate the fu­ture.”

Satish Ku­mar / The Na­tional

The Google of­fice in Dubai In­ter­net City.

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