Dubai: Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, chairperson of the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), and member of the Dubai Council, honoured on Tuesday the winners of the seventh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Award, which recognises exceptional regional and global contributions in the field of knowledge dissemination and production.
Sheikha Latifa noted the Award is an embodiment of the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to advance creativity and innovation. “In line with Dubai’s vision for social, cultural and economic development, the Award seeks to promote knowledge, innovation, creativity and enterprise in the region and beyond. We are committed to launching initiatives that can advance Dubai’s goal of stimulating knowledge and innovation-driven growth, especially by harnessing young talent,” she noted
In the category of organisations, the Award recognised the Emirates Mars Mission’s ‘Hope Probe,’ the first Arab mission to reach the Martian orbit in 2021; and Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings for its role in promoting knowledge exchange among peoples and cultures across the world.
The winners in the individual categories include Dr. Zhang Yongzhen, who was recognised for his notable contributions to the control and prevention of rabies and haemorrhagic fever. The Award also recognised him for his leadership in sequencing and publishing the genome of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, which enabled research to be conducted rapidly in many locations, and vaccines to be developed.
The Award ceremony also honoured biochemist and researcher Dr. Katalin Kariko, for her contributions to mRNA technology and the development of COVID-19 vaccines, and Dr. Drew Weissman, for his contributions to the development of the modified mRNA technology used in COVID-19 vaccines.
Supporting knowledge-based development
During the ceremony held at Hilton Dubai Al Habtoor City, Sheikha Latifa also announced the results of the 6th Global Knowledge Index 2022, the world’s only index that measures knowledge-based competitiveness.
Issued in cooperation with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the 2022 edition of the Index covered 132 countries. The UAE topped the technical education index in the sixth edition of the Index.
Sheikha Latifa said: “The Index aims to contribute to the development and enrichment of a knowledge-based society, a powerful driver of sustainable development. Education, a vital element in building a nation’s knowledge capital, is one of the most important categories of the Index.
Youth Knowledge Forum
The ceremony for the seventh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Award and the announcement of the results of the 6th Global Knowledge Index 2022 were held on the sidelines of the ‘Youth Knowledge Forum’.
Organised by the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation (MBRF) in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the four-day event is being held in person from December 6 to 7, and virtually from Dec. 8 to 9, to facilitate broader participation from across the world.
The Forum features a series of discussions and youth panels, including a session dedicated to the winners of the ‘Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Award’. The event also includes a series of preparatory meetings for the Arab Meeting of Young Leaders, launched by Ministers of Youth in the Arab world in cooperation with the Arab Youth Centre.
In collaboration with the Federal Youth Authority, the Forum also addresses new opportunities offered by metaverse technologies. Another event highlight is a panel discussion featuring award-winning Emirati youth focused on discussing the challenges faced by the younger generation.
Empowering the younger generation
Jamal bin Huwaireb, CEO of MBRF, said: “The Youth Knowledge Forum seeks to promote knowledge and enhance creativity and innovation in the transfer, dissemination, and localisation of knowledge. Through this forum, we aim to empower the younger generation to achieve their aspirations in various fields of knowledge.”
“At MBRF, we recognise the significance of developing knowledge, a key driver of social and economic development. It is an essential tool in achieving growth in various spheres of life and boosting the efficiency of community institutions. The Forum seeks to empower the younger generation to contribute to the development of various fields of knowledge, which plays a pivotal role in accelerating the transition to knowledge-based societies and economies,” he added.