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Just as it opened new frontiers in governance and leadership by setting up ministries of Happiness and Tolerance, the UAE has once again brought into focus the power of intent with the announcement of the world’s first virtual Ministry of Possibilities by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

The naming of the ministry is a distinguishing feature in itself as it confers a high status to possibilities and their contribution to nation-building, while at the same time eliminating the idea of the impossible from the dictionary of progress. It is a strategy that has been integral to UAE’s achievements.

The Ministry of Possibilities’ myriad approaches all work towards a unifying purpose: Updating the government structure and the way it works so that it can develop pre-emptive solutions to address national issues within a specific time frame.

To begin with, the ministry’s model of functioning is laid on a strong foundation: It will be run by Cabinet members. This ensures a collective, and not an individual, responsibility and is a clear and innovative departure from norm, demonstrating the ability of the UAE’s leadership to consistently seek unusual systems to harness development. A great example of the latter is also to be found in the ministry’s resolve to include well thought-out risks as a core pursuit. Risk evaluation is a powerful but often unused tool in governance that can pave the way to progress by increasing the chances of creating more benchmarks in development. Not many countries give it the credence it deserves but the UAE, by taking the path not trodden, has once again shown its characteristic courage.

The many departments in the ministry — including proactive services to customers, behaviour incentives for society and skill discovery for Emiratis — are all representations of how the next generation of government services will look like. The importance of ensuring this glimpse into the future as a confidence-building measure for people cannot be overstated. It reiterates the UAE’s resolve to always move beyond the status quo so it can nurture the most harmonious society of people and provide them with the best services and quality of life. It is a vision that has helped the UAE, since its inception, to outdo its own previous record of performance, helping it become one of the most dynamic countries in the world.