Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation Launches Global Knowledge Index

Monday 19 June 2017

Dubai - MENA Herald: The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation (MBRF) has collaborated with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) to launch the Global Knowledge Index. The Foundation announced the Index in a press conference held today (Monday, June 19, 2017) at its headquarters in the Dubai World Trade Centre.

Following directives from MBRF Chairman His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Index is the first of its kind in the world and has enlisted 140 countries, offering a platform to exchange insight and expertise. It is set to contribute to economic and social development strategies around the world, enrich the knowledge movement, and serve as a roadmap for the sustainable development of human societies.

The Global Knowledge Index also offers a new tool to flag the opportunities and identify the challenges facing nations, and produces accurate and objective data for governments and authorities to launch new programmes and initiatives to build a knowledge-centred society.

The press conference was attended by MBRF CEO His Excellency Jamal bin Huwaireb; Khaled Abdel-Shafi, Director of the UNDP Regional Hub in Amman, Jordan; Jacob Pérez, Regional Program Coordinator, Arab Bureau for United Nations Development Program (UNDP); and Dr Hany Torky, Chief Technical Advisors at the Arab Knowledge Project.

“The Global Knowledge Index ushers in a new era for the knowledge industry, taking our efforts onto the global stage,” said H.E. Jamal bin Huwaireb. “Knowledge recognises no borders; it is not limited to specific peoples or nations. With that in mind, it becomes ever so important that we embrace globalisation and be fully engaged with what is happening in the world around us – especially, the rapidly accelerating knowledge revolution.”

“Since its inception, the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation, guided by its Chairman, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has sought to launch and promote initiatives and projects that benefit society at large,” The MBRF CEO added. “Our initiatives pave new paths for productive intellectual and cultural exchange, which help build sustainable knowledge economies that reflect the vision of our wise leadership.”

H.E. bin Huwaireb revealed that MBRF and UNDP will set up a cross-continental team of experts and specialists to oversee the new index, and to ensure that it operates along a well-researched methodology. The new tool covers a diverse spectrum of sectors, including higher education; pre-university education; technical/vocational training and continued education; information and communication technology; scientific research and innovation; and, finally, economics.

For his part, Khaled Abdel-Shafi underlined the significance of this strategic and productive partnership with MBRF, commending the many initiatives under the Arab Knowledge Project. Abdel-Shafi especially emphasised the importance of the Knowledge Index as an evidence-based tool to inform and support policymakers on the different aspects and roles of knowledge in the pursuit of sustainable human development.

Abdel-Shafi added that knowledge is a critical indicator of the levels of openness and thought development in societies, adding that “this index will prompt each and every one of us to invest more in knowledge as an essential qualification in standing up to the myriad development challenges we are facing today, including – but not limited to – the challenges of water and food security, climate change, social justice, peace, security, and countering terrorism.”

The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation and the United Nations Development Program had previously collaborated on the Arab Knowledge Project and launched the Arab Knowledge Index in 2015 and the Arab Reading Index in 2016. The results for both indexes are discussed at length during the Foundation’s annual Knowledge Summit. MBRF and UNDP will work with other influential international bodies, most notably the UNESCO Institute for Statistics, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), and International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement.

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