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What to expect at the Knowledge Summit

Embracing the changes of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) and preparing for challenges ahead, is the purpose behind this year’s Knowledge Summit, the head of the organising committee told Gulf News in an exclusive interview.

The fourth edition of the summit, whose theme is ‘Knowledge and the Fourth Industrial Revolution,’ is taking place from November 21 to 22, in Dubai and will study the impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution on different sectors as it continues to redraw all aspects of life for individuals, institutions and nations.

Saif Al Mansoori, Corporate Affairs Adviser to Managing Director of the Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation (MBRF), who is the man behind the summit’s agenda, spoke to Gulf News about this year’s hot topics, highlights and expectations.

“We provide the platform, we put the thinkers and experts together, we make the information available, and we carry out the sessions and workshops with different organisations to stress the importance of the change brought about by the fourth industrial revolution,” said Al Mansoori.

This year’s topics at the summit include ‘Knowledge Cities’, which are the cities of the future, data availability challenges in the Arab region, challenges and opportunities facing the education sector in the Arab world and 4IR and higher education.

“The fourth industrial revolution will change the entire world in the near future and we need to address concerns and challenges — with one main challenge being the loss of jobs,” said Al Mansoori.

He referred to Artificial Intelligence (AI) and its integration into medicine, public services and technology, pointing out that it’s only a matter of time before robots and AI replace job roles, and the need for human interaction.

He referred to the changing nature of businesses such as travel agencies versus online booking, shopping malls vs e-commerce, and print books vs Kindle, pointing out that these changes are only the start of many to come.

The increased use of drones in different areas such as transportation, delivery services, and security are also examples of this change, he said.

The summit will also look at ‘fake news’ and the role of social media in spreading false information, cyber security, nano technology, 3D printing, genetic editing, as well as the future of content, the use of bitcoins, and the Islamic economy.

‘The Global Knowledge Index’, which reports finding from 130 countries over six segments including information communication technology (ICT,) research devotement and innovation, economy, pre-university education, technical education and training, and higher education, will also be released on the first day of the summit.

“We worked on the index for over a year with the United Nations to gather the information. The findings show the ranking of each country in different areas,” said Al Mansoori.

Following the summit, the MBRF will carry out workshops and sessions with ministers in various countries to discuss the findings and possible solutions to bridge the gaps and challenges in different sectors.

Al Mansoori also announced the start of Knowledge Week from November 19 to 23, where speakers from the summit will visit government departments and universities to hold discussions.

Knowledge ambassadors as well winners of the Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Knowledge Award will also be announced during the two-day summit.

“His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, is our leader, and he has a vision and we are following that vision. When he said we want to be the number one in the world, we listened and we are all working to achieve this vision,” said Al Mansoori.

He pointed out that all government departments complement each other and are working together to make Shaikh Mohammad’s vision a reality.

“This 4th Industrial Revolution is a challenge and we need to be prepared. This summit is a good platform to prepare ourselves for these challenges,” added Al Mansoori.

Source: Gulf News

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