Tolerance, inclusiveness and technology in focus - GulfToday

Tolerance, inclusiveness and technology in focus


Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al Nahyan at the second hybrid edition of the ABLF Talks at the Dubai Cares Pavilion.

Tolerance, constructive dialogue and peace will be the engines that drive economic and social growth, said  Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, UAE, at the second hybrid edition of the ABLF Talks at the Dubai Cares Pavilion, Expo 2020 Dubai.

The monthly leadership series, held under the patronage of Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al Nahyan and in partnership with the UAE Ministry of Economy and Dubai Cares, a UAE-based global philanthropic organisation, saw a lively discussion by world leaders on the virtues of tolerance and inclusiveness, and their role in meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In the Keynote Address, Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al Nahayan highlighted how the UAE was driven by its belief in constructive dialogues and concern for each other’s welfare. “Tolerant societies are more open, innovative and economically prosperous while tolerant businesses are more successful. We in the UAE, consider ourselves to be the example of the truth of these statements,” His Highness added.

The role of the Expo 2020 Dubai was also spotlighted as an event that not just motivated people to redesign and reshape their future but also served as a platform to learn, discover and appreciate the relationship between individuals and the world around them.

 “Our country is a land of opportunities. We will continue to be a dynamic hub of a vast, vibrant and ever-accelerating global market that serves over 2 billion people in the Middle East, Africa and beyond,” he declared.

The panel discussion that followed focused on the impact of the pandemic on the UN SDGs, especially in the education sector. Featuring Dr Tariq Al Gurg, Commissioner General for the Dubai Cares Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai and Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Cares, Dr Dena Assaf, the UN Resident Coordinator, UAE, and the Deputy Commissioner-General, United Nations and Majid Al-Usaimi, UNICEF National Ambassador and President, Asian Paralympic Committee (APC), the conversation veered on the need to democratise technology to bridge the huge gaps in society.

“COVID-19 has accelerated united efforts towards SDGs, but at the same time, it has also created a huge digital divide. If you have a shared vision and a global agenda but not enough technological connectivity or adequate force or funding, these goals cannot be achieved. Therefore, universal access to connectivity is critical,” said Dr Al Gurg. While listing out the various initiatives by Dubai Cares that aim to enhance children and youth’s access to education and creating opportunities for youth empowerment, he also announced the objectives of the upcoming RewirEd Summit, which is led by Dubai Cares in partnership with Expo 2020 Dubai and in close coordination with the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and a host of global stakeholders. Taking place at Dubai Exhibition Centre (DEC) from 12-14 December 2021, the largest education summit of its kind aims to rewire education for a prosperous and sustainable future.

Delving deep into the UN’s efforts to tide over the challenges posed by the pandemic, especially in poorer economies, Dr Assaf spoke about the need to engage with communities in a multi-level, multi-cultural and holistic manner while ensuring that technology is not used in a one-size-fits-all approach. “From the UN’s perspective, we work on the principle of - ‘no one should be left behind’,” Her Excellency added, outlining the huge difference in access among various groups in different countries.

Meanwhile, Al-Usaimi brought the issues faced by people of determination to the forefront and the role of sports in building opportunities and communities. Stressing on the need to use technology and research to identify the needs and customise programmes for their benefit, Al-Usaimi said, “Our aim should be to get everything - money, technology and expertise - towards the achievements of the same goal.”

The ABLF Talks Hybrid, which will return to the Dubai Cares Pavilion next month on December 14, is powered by four innovative superbrands, the Aditya Birla Group, a $45 billion conglomerate and Fortune 500 company, Zand, the world’s first fully digital bank, DP World, the global supply chain solutions giant and Etisalat, the world’s fastest mobile network.

LEVELLING THE GENDER PLAYING FIELD:  Zimbabwe’s Minister of Industry and Commerce, Dr Sekai Nzenza, on Tuesday credited access to education for shaping her leadership capabilities, and urged others to look beyond the headline “statistics that often blur, or do not reflect the true reality of African women, leaving out their knowledge, wisdom, and entrepreneurial spirit.”

Nzenza was speaking during a panel session on day two of the fourth edition of the Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit (#GMIS2021), which saw celebrated women leaders in business and multilateral organisations emphasise the importance of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education in levelling the playing field for gender equality in a future workforce.

Emphasising the positive impact of technology on increasing women’s inclusion in male-dominated sectors, such as oil and gas, Fatema Al Nuaimi, CEO of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company Liquified Natural Gas (ADNOC LNG), said: “Technology is going to play a key role in enabling the integration of more and more women into the LNG sector, which has traditionally had challenging workplace conditions for women to operate in, as we explore remote field operations and integrating AI for automation.”

These industry transformations will require “talent regardless of its background,” she added.

Speaking on emancipating the job market, Chiara Corazza, Special Representative to the G7 and G20 at the Women’s Forum for the Economy & Society, said: “85% of jobs in 2030 do not exist yet, but STEM education will offer the same opportunities for our young boys and girls, because talent has no gender.”

“There is a leaky pipeline for women talent in STEM,” said Ayumi Moore Aoki, Founder and CEO of the global NGO Women in Tech, referring to the lack of women who receive STEM education without entering the STEM workforce, and the subsequent loss of interest in STEM subjects among teenage girls.

She added that women need to be encouraged into leadership from a young age, “from classroom to boardroom, we need to teach women to become leaders.”

For her part, Tiffany Kelly, Founder and CEO of Beyond Bamboo, an online marketplace and wholesale platform for sustainable and ethical products, said: “We need to look at a culture change, and move away from the parasitic view of leadership and towards inclusive leadership standards that encourages collaboration and partnership.”

Jan Ward, CEO of industrial parts maker Corrotherm, said: “Ultimately, if you don’t have diversity, you don’t get diversity of creativity and understanding.”

Under the theme ‘Rewiring Societies: Repurposing Digitalisation for Prosperity’, #GMIS2021 convened key global leaders from government, business, and civil society to discuss how data and connectivity are shaping the future of the manufacturing sector while presenting opportunities for investments in technology, innovation, and industrialisation.

Initiative for Industrial Safety: The Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit on Tuesday announced the launch of the ‘Global Initiative for Future Industrial Safety’, an unconventional collaborative platform that will promote industrial safety technologies through policy responses, advancing best practices and facilitating cross-sectoral collaboration.

Launched in partnership with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and Lloyd’s Register Foundation, the ‘Global Initiative for Future Industrial Safety’ will bring together a global coalition of stakeholders that puts safety at the heart of Fourth Industrial Revolution developments and aims to make the world a safer place by developing tools and resources to advance safety capabilities in the manufacturing sector.

This Initiative, a continuation of the ongoing relationship between GMIS, UNIDO and the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, was supported by the University of Cambridge that facilitated the implementation of the project scope through working groups with industrial safety experts. Together, the three partners aim to build global consensus on universal safety standards, guidelines and trainings, in addition to promoting the latest safety technologies and industrial innovations.

The partnership was announced by Namir Hourani, Manging Director of the Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit and member of the GMIS Organising Committee, Philip Rice, Managing Director and Consultant of Lloyd’s Register Group and Sergey Korotkov, Director of the UNIDO Centre for International Industrial Cooperation in the Russian Federation at a press conference at the fourth edition of GMIS (#GMIS2021)  at EXPO’s Dubai Exhibition Centre.


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