Hessa BuHumaid (left), Nayla Al Khaja and Al Saad Al Menhali
The 10th edition of International Government Communication Forum (IGCF), organised by the Sharjah Government Media Bureau (SGMB), on September 26 – 27 in Expo Centre Sharjah, will host several brainstorming sessions and discussions aimed at catalysing dialogue and promoting more effective use of communication as an instrument of policy-making and open government.
The forum’s robust agenda includes two interactive sessions – one discussing the importance of public involvement in decision-making through government communication channels, while the second will highlight the effectiveness of storytelling in effectively translating government discourses to communities.
Hessa Buhumaid, UAE Minister of Community Development, will lead an interactive session on the second day of the forum, titled ‘How does the community get involved in decision-making?’
The session, which will be attended by representatives of all segments of the community, including children, adolescents, the youth and elderly, and people with determination, will not only analyse methodologies and models for public-government communication and their impact, and study effective mechanisms for assessing public opinion, but also highlight how the tonality of government responses can play a significant role in fostering trust between the officials and the community.
The session will also reveal the statistics on citizens’ participation in policy-making, government decision-making and development of public services, besides highlighting the efforts made by the UAE’s institutions to develop a constructive communications policy based on transparency and public opinion. The session will be moderated by Mohammed Al Kaabi, Emirati writer and media professional.
Storytelling for effective government communication
According to American psychologist Jerome Bruner, messages delivered to humans in the form of stories are 22 times more memorable than messages delivered in the form of facts.
Will Storr (left), Rashed Al Falahi, Mohammed Al Kaabi and Malek Maktabi
Moderated by Lebanese television presenter Malek Maktabi, who has a leading regional reputation for managing dialogues in a narrative form, a session titled ‘Nature of storytelling and function in discourse’ will feature a distinguished panel that will review examples of successful storytelling and guide the audience on how to use the technique to develop ideas and strategies.
The discussion will feature Rashed Al Falahi, the UAE’s first Chief Storytelling Officer appointed by the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), who has been leveraging his storytelling to translate FANR's vision into easily understood messages via different methods, social media platforms, videos and events.
Al Falahi will be joined by Al Saad Al Menhali, Editor-in-Chief, National Geographic; Nayla Al Khaja, Emirati writer, director, and producer; and Will Storr, author and photographer. Together, they will discuss the role of storytelling in government’s communication; shed light on ways government departments can improve their storytelling abilities; and highlight new and emerging channels and platforms that can capture the attention and interest of the general public.
The forum will evaluate the historical experience of government communication, discuss its current realities, and envision its future.
The Child Safety Department (CSD), a subsidiary of Sharjah’s Supreme Council for Family Affairs (SCFA), will organise the first Child Safety Forum at Al Jawaher Reception and Convention Centre on Sept.17, under the theme ‘Responsible Media… Safe Child’.
Dr Abdulaziz Almusallam, Chairman of the Sharjah Institute of Heritage (SIH), revealed details of the 19th edition of the Sharjah International Narrator Forum at a press conference organised by the institute on Tuesday morning in the SIH offices. The forum is expected to commence on Sept.24 at the Sharjah Expo Center and will last for three days.
The first Sharjah Contact Centres Forum, being held in Khorfakkan on Monday, will feature two interactive sessions and two interactive workshops to discuss the future of contact centres. The Forum, being organised by the Sharjah Contact Centre of the Sharjah Government Media Bureau under the theme “Towards Effective Communication” will debate the effective and innovative methods of developing the work mechanism of contact centres and improving the efficiency of those working in this industry.
Sheikh Mohammed also announced the new government strategic approach that will lay the foundations of work for the next 50 years.
Sheikh Mohammed wrote on Twitter: "Brothers and sisters... after consulting with my brother Mohamed Bin Zayed and the President of the State, we announce today the new ministerial formation of the federal government in the UAE... and with the new formation we also announce a new methodology for the federal government work for the fifty."
"We have given at least one dose of the vaccine to more than 91 per cent (of adults) and 39 per cent have got both,” Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told reporters. "There was also a sharp decrease in hospitalisations and the rate of reinfection is also on the decline..."