First Knowledge Conference calls for collaborative approach to maximize knowledge transfer to Arab youth
The most efficient manner in which to pass on and stimulate the creation of knowledge among young people in the Arab world was explored by a distinguished panel at the First Knowledge Conference, currently being held in Dubai, UAE. It was agreed that the buy-in of a number of different stakeholders, including government, academic institutions and the private sector is required for the process of knowledge transfer to work effectively.
The First Knowledge Conference, which is the first event of its kind in the region, is being organized under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, by Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation.
During the session, leading academics from across the Middle East discussed the importance of engaging young people in the region about key issues which will have a significant impact on the future success of the nations within the Arab world. Education was identified as a crucial incubator for both entrepreneurship and innovation, two important concepts that to thrive require long-term thinking, lasting funding and the transfer of knowledge.
The empowerment of youth and ensuring that they are equipped with relevant and salient knowledge should be an aspiration of any country which wants to achieve success. Young people are the foundation of a successful society, driving potential development through their creativity and dynamism. To enable this, it is crucial for knowledge transfer to be a leading agenda of the government, the panel concluded.
Dr. Ekhlief Tarawneh, President of the University of Jordan, said: “A combined approach, in which different organisations, businesses and government work together to plot a path for the future is often the most fruitful in terms of delivering results. When attempting to transfer knowledge from one generation to the next, it is important that the recipients – the youth of today – are engaged and involved at every stage of the process. Young people are the key contributor within this as not only will they be the party which will benefit from the outcomes in the future, but often they are also the generation which displays creativity, dynamism and innovation; the key components to delivering a successful solution”.
Dr. Karma Al Hassan, Director of the office of institutional research & assessment at the AUB, added: “Education and training can encourage youth to initially access and then augment the knowledge society and economy. This is a critically important process which bestows the values and skills which can benefit the wider nation, and potentially the entire world, in both the short- and long-term.”
Dr. Hassan said the channel of knowledge transfer should always be considered a multi-lateral formula, and it has been proven to be most effective when there are a number of stakeholders from the public, private and government sectors involved.
“The primary participant should always be the young people themselves as they are often the most capable of learning and being productive. Universities must demonstrate the ability to continuously adapt and update their curriculum and methods of teaching to promote innovation, entrepreneurship, and knowledge transfer,” Dr. Hassan added.
The First Knowledge Conference is being held from December 7-9, 2014, at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Dubai