13 April 2019- Hamdan Bin Mohammed Smart University (HBMSU) joined the recently concluded ‘First Global Forum for Higher Education and Scientific Research’ in Cairo, Egypt. It was the first university in the GCC region to attend the event held under the patronage of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who graced the international conference. The high-level participants tackled the current and future status of higher education and scientific research in relation to innovation, technology, and knowledge. During the forum, HBMSU Chancellor Dr. Mansoor Al Awar showcased the university’s pioneering features and experiences as one of the top regional and international higher education institutions. Dr. Al Awar also highlighted HBMSU’s leading role in changing the face of traditional education by focusing on innovation, creativity, scientific research, and modern technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality, Internet of Things, and other next-generations tools.
During his presentation titled ‘The Future of Higher Education,’ Dr. Al Awar discussed HBMSU’s unique international model in re-shaping the future of higher education through the adoption of a smart education approach. The university was the first higher educational institution in the UAE to integrate advanced technologies into its learning system. HBMSU, for example, has adopted the approach of games in learning as well as launched the school of Artificial Intelligence to nurture, develop, and enhance the skills of its learners according to the country’s vision for the future. The UAE was the first to utilize AI and make the shift to knowledge economy under the guidance of its wise leaders, who believe in the importance of harnessing the full power of technological innovations to push forward the country’s socio-economic development agenda and national progress.
He said: “Today, educational institutions have to strengthen their cooperation to establish new and innovative ways to enhance the role of education in shaping the future and building a comprehensive and sustainable future at the local and global levels. At HBMSU, we are committed to sharing our leading experiences as the first accredited university to promote smart education in the region using a unique international education model based on the three pillars of innovation, disruption, and transformation. Our aim is to build qualified generations equipped with contemporary knowledge and innovative skills in line with the directives of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and President of the University, who considers young people as a key pillar of advancement and development of all societies.
Dr. Al Awar added: “We are honored to join top Arab and international leaders who gathered for the forum to discuss opportunities and challenges in higher education amidst rapid technological revolution. The ‘Global Forum for Higher Education and Scientific Research’ proved to be a leading international forum capable of uniting all regional and global efforts designed to accelerate the development of the sector in the 21st century. We need to enhance the role of education and scientific research in today’s Fourth Industrial Revolution and rapid knowledge transformation. The event offered an ideal platform for us to share our expertise with the Arab and international academic communities, especially in the area of leveraging advanced technologies according to our needs.”
He also addressed some of the pressing issues topped by the importance of international classifications by showcasing the features of the ‘Global Benchmarking Framework for Classification of Smart & e-Learning Universities’ launched recently by HBMSU. The framework was developed to strengthen HBMSU’s position as one of the top 10 smart universities in the world, underscoring the university’s leading role in reshaping the standards of smart education to produce entrepreneurs and ambassadors of knowledge rather than mere job seekers. Dr. Al Awar stressed the importance of developing teaching curricula in line with the national developmental agenda to enhance the skills of learners and faculty members in the field of scientific research and innovation.
The HBMSU Chancellor joined 55 speakers to discuss this year’s key themes, namely the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution and Emerging Technologies;’ ‘Internationalization of Education;’ ‘Knowledge-Based Economy;’ and the ‘Role of Higher Education and Scientific Research in Achieving Sustainable Development.’ The forum, which was organized by Egypt’s Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MHESR), was held under the theme ‘Between The Present and The Future.’ Its line-up of high-level participants included leaders, decision makers, government and academic figures, researchers, experts, and influencers. Also present were the representatives of top Egyptian, Arab, and global universities and organizations such as UNESCO; the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD); the United States Agency for International Development (USAID); Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA); Mohammed Bin Rashid Foundation; British Council; African Development Bank; the Association of Arab Universities; the Association of African Universities, and many others.
The forum which is held recently attracted participants from France, Greece, Finland, Portugal, Poland, Italy, Germany, Slovenia, Belgium, Switzerland, Montenegro, the United States, Canada, China, India, Kazakhstan, Australia, Nigeria, Chad, Somalia, Zambia, Mauritania, Togo, and Tanzania. The participating Arab countries included the UAE, Morocco, Iraq, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Palestine, Yemen, Sudan, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon.