Dubai, UAE, 16 August 2016: The UAE stands at the forefront of the Arab world in the Global Innovation Index 2016, and has moved up 6 places in comparison to last year. This is a result of the long-term vision of our wise leadership that focuses on innovation, as shown by the declaration by of HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, that 2015 is the year of innovation, and the National Innovation Strategy launched by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai, to make the UAE one of the most innovative countries in the world. We are implementing the directives of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and the Dubai Plan 2021, to transform Dubai into a city of happy, creative, and empowered people. Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) supports the efforts of our wise leadership to establish the position of Dubai and the UAE as a platform for innovation and as a creativity incubator. This supports the Dubai Innovation Strategy, which emphasises that innovation is a priority for improving government services and initiatives and a basis to develop our strategies and plans.
DEWA adopts an integrated strategy to stimulate research in renewable energy and water and implement creative ideas and suggestions. We are also committed to adopting the best studies and research in all our operations and services, enhancing our leading position, to achieve our vision to become a sustainable innovative world-class utility. DEWA continues to pursue an innovative approach, and to build its future strategic plans to support sustainable development in Dubai. DEWA has adopted innovation within its strategy for 2021, and has adopted strategic innovation as one of 5 major pillars of the DEWA 2021 Strategic Plan. We aim to achieve the goals of our strategy by the time we celebrate the Golden Jubilee of our Union.
DEWA’s Innovation Centre is one of the innovative projects at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. It features a number of research and development centres in clean energy technologies, drone research, 3D-printing, and water desalination using solar energy, with a total investment of AED 500 million. Last year, DEWA launched its Innovation Week, to enhance the UAE’s international position in innovation. Innovation Week comprised of 30 innovative activities and events, and witnessed the launch of 40 innovations for sustainable energy and water.
The activities also included the launch of ‘My Innovation’ (Ibtikari in Arabic), for university students and engineering specialists to identify scientific solutions and innovations in sustainability and water. DEWA concluded its Innovation Week by hosting the fifth Creativity and Innovation Week to mark its innovative achievements with international sustainability, renewable energy, and water experts. DEWA also launched the Afkari (Arabic for MyDEWAideas) internal programme, the first creative programme in the Government of Dubai, where employees are actively encouraged to vote and comment on other employees’ ideas and collaborate and share best practices. DEWA also studies innovative ideas and development comments received from the Mohammed bin Rashid Smart Majlis, which is an innovative platform that enables direct interaction and helps government organisations to receive innovative ideas and development comments that benefit generations to come.
DEWA is organising the Solar Decathlon Middle East (SDME), which is scheduled to take place in 2018, and again in 2020. The decathlon aims to motivate university students and encourage them to innovate and use their creativity to design efficient and self-sufficient buildings.
This supports the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, that relies on innovation, and Research and Development (R&D) as the basis for the future of energy. DEWA cooperates with different government and private organisations to enhance our position to the same level as the largest international utilities, while working to provide sustainable and innovative services according to the highest standards of efficiency, accountability and availability, to make Dubai the happiest and smartest city in the world.