Dubai: A three-day global education summit, world majlis events, an interactive workshop on experiential learning, and a business forum are among the headline events uniting global thought leaders and change-makers at Expo 2020 Dubai’s Knowledge and Learning Week, happening from December 12-18.
The theme week, in association with UAE-based global philanthropic organisation Dubai Cares, “will analyse how knowledge can propel a global community to innovate for a better future for all”.
It is one of 10 theme weeks anchoring Expo’s Programme for People and Planet, and will kick off with the three-day RewirEd Summit on December 12 at Dubai Exhibition Centre, Expo 2020 Dubai.
Led by Dubai Cares, in partnership with Expo and in close coordination with the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the summit will focus on three key pressing areas in education worldwide: Youth, Skills and the Future of Work; Innovation in Education; and Education Financing.
According to organisers, five heads of state and over 40 ministers will take part in the RewirEd Summit. Speakers, appearing either in-person or virtually, will include Prince Albert II of Monaco; Mokgweetsi Masisi, President of Botswana; Faustin-Archange Touadéra, President of the Central African Republic; Uhuru Kenyatta, President of Kenya; Jakaya Kikwete, former President of Tanzania and Chair of the Board of Directors of Global Partnership for Education (GPE); Gordon Brown, UK’s former Prime Minister and UN Special Envoy for Global Education; and Patrizio Bianchi, Italy’s Minister of Education.
Equitable education system
A World Majlis at the Women’s Pavilion on December 13 will answer the question ‘How do we ensure our education system delivers for women and girls?’. Speakers include Maruja Gorday de Villalobos, Panama’s Minister of Education; and Safeena Husain, social worker and founder of India-based non-profit Educate Girls.
Additional World Majlises, held throughout the week at Terra — The Sustainability Pavilion will host stimulating conversations on how best to equip youth for success in the 21st century by debating ‘What if we learned to learn differently?’
Preparing for the future.
The Knowledge and Learning Week Business Forum will take place on December 14 at DP World Pavilion. There will be panel discussions, Q & As and presentations on harnessing and challenging knowledge to better prepare for the future. Speakers at the event, co-curated by Expo 2020 and Dubai Chamber, will include Liina Kersna, Estonia’s Minister of Education; Marjaana Sall, Ambassador for Education, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Finland; and Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, Ghana’s Minister of Education.
UAE development strategy
Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General, Expo 2020 Dubai, said: “A cornerstone of the UAE’s development strategy, education has witnessed a fundamental shift since the beginning of the pandemic, with traditional learning modes dismantled in favour of others that better equip our next generation for the demands of the 21st century. With this in mind, in collaboration with our friends at Dubai Cares, Knowledge & Learning Week will spotlight how to strengthen the provision of inclusive, equitable access to quality education, as enshrined in the Sustainable Development Goals, in a changed world.
Dr Tariq Al Gurg, CEO and vice-chairman at Dubai Cares, added: “Education has been integral to the UAE’s growth and development over the years. The Knowledge and Learning Week at Expo 2020 Dubai is a strong reflection of the country’s enduring commitment to advocating for the importance of education in driving a sustainable future for all. As the flagship event of this week, the RewirEd Summit, in particular, will not only reinforce the UAE’s long-standing efforts in promoting access to quality education, but also championing a much-needed transformation in global education to make it more robust and resilient to crises.”
Throughout the week, social enterprises from the Expo Live Innovation Impact Grant Programme and the Expo 2020 Best Practice Programme will present their innovative ideas for creating more inclusive societies — from night schooling children in India using solar lanterns, to theatre and play-based learning with marginalised communities in Lebanon and Jordan, and a Canada-grown solution designed to provide early literacy learning outcomes for children using ‘Talking Stickers’.
Meanwhile, the Expo Live Impact Series will take place from December 13-17 at The Hub, The Good Place by Expo Live pavilion. It is an opportunity to hear from grantees such as Wild Shots Outreach, teaching the value and benefit of local ecology in South Africa’s Kruger National Park; and Blossom Academy, upskilling Ghanaian talent to be successful data scientists and pairing them with start-ups across Africa.