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21 February 2024

Dubai Culture holds ‘Towards 2033’ Foresight Lab

By Emirates247

Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) held its first Foresight Lab under the theme 'Towards 2033 | CO-DESIGNING THE FUTURE OF CULTURE' in collaboration with the Dubai Design & Creativity Lab, a subsidiary under Dubai Future Foundation. The lab meets the objectives of the Dubai Future Readiness Index that aim to assess Dubai government entities’ readiness to seize new opportunities and overcome future challenges via 66 sub-indicators across five key areas that makes the index a global benchmark for designing strategies, setting priorities, highlighting areas for improvement, and developing future knowledge exchange programmes, which contributes to cementing Dubai’s position as a city that prioritises well-being, safeguarding livelihoods, and increasing preparedness to overcome future challenges and leverage opportunities.
Hala Badri, Director General of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority in Dubai, along with CEOs, directors and select representatives of the Authority's departments, participated in the activities of the lab that was held in the Office of the Future, where they discussed global trends in the fields of culture and creativity, the possibilities of linking them to the pillars of Dubai's cultural vision, and benefiting from them in highlighting the identity of the cultural city, with the aim of contributing to the creation of a vibrant and inclusive cultural and creative scene capable of enhancing the city's attractiveness to residents, visitors and investors alike.
The Foresight Lab technique relied on the use of innovative methods to develop a comprehensive road map covering challenges and opportunities, harnessing the elements of culture and creativity to enhance Dubai's identity and its ability to attract and retain creative talent, and stimulate international investment and local community engagement. This ensures the emirate’s continued growth and sustainable development in its creative environment, relying on the strength of the enabling factors to support the creative economy and its health in terms of its urban and digital infrastructure and quality of life. It also discussed the unique benefits the emirate offers, in addition to developing methods and tools that increase access to the full value of some sectors of the cultural and creative industries and develop their efficiency.
As part of input analysis, the lab participants  shed light on a group of factors that supported the prosperity of the cultural and creative industries in Dubai, such as the strength and diversity of creative talent – the Creative Economy's key foundation and main asset , enablers such as the urban infrastructure and livability, the city’s uniqueness that allows it to generate value and attract and cultivate creative talent, social networks, the mature digital environment that contributes to the development of methods and tools that can increase the access to and efficiency of the entire value chain of the cultural and creative sector and innovative financing facilities.  This is in addition to Dubai’s efforts towards stimulating innovation, in addition to promoting dialogue with the creative community as well as key stakeholders within the ecosystem of the preservation and celebration of tangible and intangible cultural heritage. It also focused on governance policies, supporting and improving the flow of cultural content and enhancing its discoverability on digital platforms.
During the lab, the Authority also discussed means of supporting gender equality and diversity, and encouragement of public investment in culture and creativity by expanding the area of exchange and the flow of cultural goods and services, in addition to the mobility of artists and professionals, and the importance of activating partnerships between the public and private sectors at all levels, to ensure the success of sustainable financing plans, and others.
Hala Badri stressed the need to innovate new methods to develop the cultural and creative industries in Dubai, and activate its role in strengthening the identity of the emirate and its ability to attract and preserve creative talent, whether individuals or institutions, affirming that organising the lab stems from the Authority's belief in leadership responsibility, which represents the cornerstone of achieving Dubai's vision for the future.
Badri said: “The Foresight Lab represents an opportunity that enables us to work on developing futuristic strategies and plans aimed at improving the attractiveness of Dubai and planning for its future. This supports Dubai's creative economy, and helps create a clear work system capable of creating a road map that highlights the type of challenges facing the sector as well as the possibilities of converting them into opportunities in developing and activating the role of culture in keeping pace with the emirate's ambitious visions.”
Badri affirmed the importance of benefiting from global trends and weak signals that may form trends of massive positive impacts, and aligning them with Dubai's cultural priorities, adding: “Dubai Culture is keen to discuss the effects of the rapid development of the technology sector on the creative economy, the contribution of the digital boom and advanced technologies in supporting and distinguishing the creative industry and its role in stimulating economic and social development. This is all done by studying the strategies of global value chains and strengthening the ecosystem for the establishment, growth and stability of local companies, and encouraging investment in smart and innovative industrial policies that serve a number of creative sectors to enhance their growth.”
Badri added: “Through the Foresight Lab, we sought a set of initiatives that address the main challenges facing our sectors after analysing their performance locally, regionally and globally, in addition to presenting and discussing a group of innovative ideas for the cultural work system in the emirate.”
Amal Bin Shabib, CEO of the Dubai Design & Creativity Lab, confirmed that the importance of the Foresight Lab lies in providing a unified platform that encourages brainstorming and spreads a culture of innovation and creative thinking, saying: “Dubai Lab harnesses the concepts of design and creativity to develop policies and strategies to make Dubai among the best cities in the world to live in. Our hosting of the Foresight Lab confirms the need to use creativity and design thinking in support of the vision of the emirate's government. This is based on our national responsibility and aspirations aimed at enriching knowledge and building a society characterized by leadership thinking, which contributes to the continuation and development of Dubai's development process. At the Dubai Design & Creativity Lab, we believe in the importance of cooperation between individuals and entities, to think together to design new visions, imagine a better future driven by curiosity, and the power of cooperation to drive innovation, and support the growth and development of the city as a leading global hub.”