Former Prime Minister of Malaysia, H.E. Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, has been sharing his insights on leadership as a key driver of the global economy, citing Dubai as the “perfect example of what leadership means and what leadership can do.”
Dr. Mahathir was delivering the keynote speech during the opening of the International Conference on Leadership, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (ICLIE’16), a two-day forum organized by Canadian University Dubai (CUD), hosted at Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai.
Leaders need to be broad-minded and have the ability to recognize their own strengths and weaknesses, as well as their country’s assets, in order to succeed in nation building, said Dr. Mahathir. Speaking about his own experience of leading the transformation of Malaysia during his 22 years as Prime Minister, Dr. Mahathir said that the foundations of good leadership were to unite a population and to know what your followers expect from you.
During the opening day of the conference Dr. Mahathir also shared a discussion with Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, on the parallels between the rapid economic advancement of Malaysia and that of Dubai and the Emirates.
Also delivering a keynote address during the opening session was Mr. David Wang, CEO of leading technology solutions providers and chief sponsor of ICLIE’16, Huawei UAE. Speaking on the theme of innovation, Mr. Wang addressed the topic ‘Building a Better Connected Tomorrow’. He said that we are only at the ‘beginning of the beginning’ of the information society and future decades will see Dubai as a world centre on the technology stage.
The speech preceded the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Mr. But Saeed Al Ghandi, Chancellor of CUD and Mr. Wang, in the presence of H.E. Chang Hua, Chinese Ambassador to the UAE. The new agreement will see CUD and Huawei UAE cooperate on a range of initiatives that promote R&D, and the professional development of students.
Day one of the conference saw researchers, practitioners and policy makers come together to debate the emerging challenges and long-term solutions to some of the key business challenges arising in the globalized economy.
The 200 delegates present at the conference went on to attend a series of workshops on the subjects of International Entrepreneurship and Small Business; Contemporary Leadership and Management; Technology, Innovations, and Sustainability; and New Trends in Global Economics, Finance, and Management.
The conference themes were set to align with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to promote innovation and entrepreneurship, and to support innovators across various sectors within the UAE to transform ideas into innovative projects that will contribute to the country’s national innovation strategy and to achieving the UAE Vision 2021.
This was also the theme for the high school competition, which ran alongside day one of the conference, and saw senior students from schools across the UAE exhibit their enterprising ideas and innovations.
Day two of the Conference will hear from internationally renowned figures in the field of enterprise and innovation, including Professor Benoit Montreuil of Georgia Tech Institute, USA, who is leading the International Physical Internet Initiative, and Dr. Margaret Dalziel of the University of Waterloo, Canada, who is widely recognized as an international authority on the design and evaluation of business support programs.
The conference proceedings will be published by Springer. Canadian University Dubai is grateful for the support of conference sponsors, Huawei UAE and Air Canada.