The UAE Government Leaders Programme (UAEGLP) has launched a new category, the UAE Youth Programme, specifically designed to prepare young Emirati nationals for public sector leadership positions.
The UAEGLP also comprises the Strategic Leaders Programme, Executive Leaders Programme and Future Leaders Programme, and has evolved from the Mohammed Bin Rashid Programme for Leadership Development (MBRPLD), which has been successful in developing a wide range of leaders.
The UAE Youth Programme lasts eight months and is designed in cooperation with the Ministry of State for Youth Affairs. It will target Emirati nationals aged 21 to 30.
The programme focuses on happiness and positivity; brainstorming and innovation; global challenges; the art of dealing; social skills; and future thought. Creative leadership and science and technology are also on the agenda, with special attention being given to artificial intelligence (AI) in future forecasting.
“The UAE Youth Programme is the only government programme dedicated to training young nationals in leadership disciplines,” said Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, minister of state for Youth Affairs and chairwoman of Emirates Youth Council.
“The Emirates Youth Council is happy to be collaborating with the UAE Government Leaders Programme to train a generation of qualified young leaders who can deal with the challenges of the future and carry out the UAE government’s campaign for holistic sustainable development.”
Commenting on the potential impact of the new youth training initiative, Oxford Strategic Consulting (OSC) estimated that up to 200 future leaders each year will complete the new programme. Professor William Scott-Jackson, Chairman of OSC said: “Initially, the programme will target government and government-related organisations, such as ADNOC or Mubadala, but the ‘graduates’ could end up working in any sector. The goal is to build Emirati leadership capability in general, not just capabilities within the government.”
OSC’s past research, including the ‘Maximising Emirati Talent’ report, found that leadership is the most important strategic capability for the UAE, where 64 per cent of Emiratis will need to become leaders if Emiratis are to lead the country and its major organisations.
“We have also recommended that leadership development should begin as young as possible. OSC would like to see leadership development starting as young as five years old by providing kids with early leadership opportunities,” added Professor Scott-Jackson.
At the launch of the Mena Talent Competitiveness Index in May, experts acknowledged that the GCC has a ‘youth bulge’ – 60 per cent of the region’s population is under 25 – but the consensus was that there is great potential to develop the younger generation with proper training.
There are several other initiatives to address the need to train Emirati youth. In April, the Emirates Youth Council and Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala), the Abu Dhabi-based investment and development company, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) aimed at developing the nation’s youth and equipping them with the skills required to become future leaders.
The Young Arab Leaders (YAL) is an independent non-profit membership network registered at Dubai Chamber. YAL empowers the next generation of leaders in the Arab World by developing a strong network of Arab industry leaders who serve as mentors to young entrepreneurs, business delegates and university students.
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