February 2016

Smart Dubai hosts MENA OECD Working Group – Open & Innovative

Smart Dubai hosted the 11th working session of the MENA OECD Working Group on Open and Innovative Government, part of the 2016 World Government Summit. The session hosted by Smart Dubai CEO Wesam Lootah, and attended by global OECD representatives as well as government leaders from Jordan, Bahrain, Lebanon, Morocco, Spain and Estonia.

Younus Al Nasser, Assistant Director General of the Smart Dubai Office, addressed the session on the role of technology in enabling an open, transparent and innovative government. In his leadership role within the Dubai Data Initiative, Mr. Al Nasser also discussed the influence of the Dubai Data Law in creating a culture of openness and sharing among government leaders and the private sector. Mr. Al Nasser stressed that collaboration between nations is a cornerstone of Smart Dubai’s approach, and welcomed ongoing dialogue with the MENA – OECD members.

Read the full text of Younus Al Nasser’s statement on Collaborating for People’s Happiness below:

Collaborating for People’s Happiness

Your Excellencies, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, it is my honour to address you today during this 11th annual meeting of the working group on Open and Innovative Government

We are gathered here today, as thought leaders and decision makers, to discuss and share insights and best practices for the future of government in our region.

We are here because we recognise the power of technology to transform the way we as governments serve our residents and visitors to promote our most valuable asset - people’s happiness.

Launched in 2014 under the visionary guidance of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, Smart Dubai is dedicated to creating happiness by embracing technology innovation to make Dubai more seamless, safe, efficient and impactful for all residents and visitors.

For two years, Smart Dubai and its Strategic Partners have been innovating, researching, planning and listening to the people of Dubai to design and deliver city experiences to enhance quality of life for all.

A smart government cannot serve the needs of its people without engaging with its people. By collaborating with strategic partners across 9 government entities and 2 smart districts, Smart Dubai is able to leverage a diverse network of engagement portals to ensure the voice of every customer is heard.

Launched in April 2015 by Smart Dubai and the Dubai Smart Government Establishment, the Happiness Meter is an engagement touchpoint that captures the happiness level of every customer at government service interaction point throughout the city.

Data gathered through the Happiness Meter dashboard is empowering decision makers to implement new strategies and programs to promote customer happiness wherever he or she interacts with the government.

As the technology arm of Smart Dubai, the Dubai Smart Government Establishment has baked customer engagement into the heart of their operational procedures. DSGE has pioneered the first regional Customer Experience Lab, a state-of-the-art facility to gather feedback from Dubai residents and visitors that inform the design and build of every new product or service we will offer.

Innovation will not happen in a silo. By fostering opportunities for collaboration between the public and private sector, Smart Dubai is laying the foundation upon which new ideas are inspired and built for the future of Dubai.

Smart Dubai strategic partner Dubai Internet City has led a series of hackathon events, DECODE Dubai, in which students and entrepreneurs gather and compete to create the most innovative and viable smart solutions. Winners from past events have gone on to compete at global hackathon events through the Barcelona Smart City World Expo.

Smart Dubai and strategic partner Dubai Silicon Oasis are also pioneering the first ever Smart City Masters program, in partnership with the Rochester Institute of Technology, developing a course of study that will open smart city best practices to all students and city leaders.

Governments are the most effective when they have the trust of their residents and visitors. Technology innovation is a tool for smart governments to enable innovation, provide transparent of government services, and engage with the public and private sector and individuals.

The well-regulated opening and sharing of government data is integral to government transparency and engagement. The Dubai Data Law sets the framework for an ambitious and comprehensive data initiative governing the opening and sharing of Dubai’s data from the public and private sector, increasing access to opportunity and improving quality of life for all.

Technology is a tool for innovation, but we do not wield it alone. Collaborating with and learning from our regional peers is fundamental to our smart transformation.

I look forward to hearing from and sharing with each of you today, as we better learn how we can leverage the gift of technology to achieve our ultimate goal - the happiness of our residents and visitors.

Thank you.