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30 November 2023

Latifa bint Mohammed attends Youth Media Retreat held during the inaugural Youth Media Forum

By E247

Retreat features brainstorming session aimed at opening new vistas for the next generation
Media students discuss ideas and strategic perspectives on keeping pace with the rapidly changing media scene
Retreat is part of the Dubai Media Council’s strategy to raise the capabilities of the next generation of media professionals to actively shape the future of the sector
Event generates ideas to bolster young media talent development including training programmes and talent recognition initiatives

The Youth Media Forum organised by the Dubai Press Club today under the directives of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Second Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Media Council, hosted a Youth Media Retreat as part of the Council’s strategy to raise the capabilities of the next generation of media professionals to actively shape the future of the sector. The Retreat was attended by Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) and Member of the Dubai Council.

Organised under the auspices of the Dubai Media Council in cooperation with the Dubai Design and Creativity Lab, the retreat featured participants drawn from various media schools across Dubai. A total of 30 representatives of the media student community attended the event. The session was also attended by His Excellency Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of Education.

Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed said Dubai is committed to empowering the youth to contribute creative ideas that can transform vital sectors in the UAE as part 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 create a vibrant environment for young talent to flourish. His Highness’s commitment to raise the participation of youth in national life is demonstrated by his recent announcement on social media that he is looking for a 'distinguished young man or woman' to fill the role of Youth Minister, she said.

Commending the concept of the Youth Media Forum, Her Highness noted that the event is aligned with the UAE leadership’s commitment to harness the competencies of the youth by providing them the resources needed to turn their ideas and innovation into reality. The forum reflects Dubai's growing status as the region’s pre-eminent media hub and a focal point for a creative resurgence in Arab media. Dubai has always been committed to fostering meaningful dialogue on ways to enhance the capabilities of the younger generation to excel in the field of media, Sheikha Latifa added.

During the Retreat, students shared their perspectives on gaps hampering youth participation in the media sector and spelled out areas for improvement that would make the sector more attractive for emerging professionals heading into the future.

Her Excellency Nehal Badri, Secretary General of the Dubai Media Council, said: “The discussions at the Youth Media Retreat revolved around three key pillars. The first of them was focused on innovative approaches to recognising young media talent and their creative contributions to the sector. The discussions touched on how raising the profile of creative role models can inspire other youth to aspire for excellence.”

“The retreat’s second pillar highlighted the importance of equipping young media professionals, including students and graduates with new skills and expertise through hands-on training at media organisations. These opportunities have a significant impact on broadening career prospects for youth in this field. The third pillar explored ways to raise awareness among the youth about opportunities in the media industry before their enrollment in universities,” she added.

Explaining the concept behind the Youth Media Retreat, Amal bin Shabib, CEO of the Dubai Design and Creativity Lab, said: “We conceived the retreat to empower young media talent and equip them with the skills and insights needed to navigate the complex shifts in the media. To step into their roles as the architects of tomorrow’s media, the youth need to gain the strong foundation of knowledge necessary to deal with the shifting contours of the industry landscape. In designing the Retreat, our focus was to create a space that fosters creativity, innovation and a forward-thinking mindset, allowing the participants to explore new solutions to meet the needs of emerging media professionals.”

Hamda Al Najjar, Member of the Organising Committee of the Youth Media Forum, said: “As the leaders of tomorrow, young media professionals need vastly different skills and knowledge to adapt to the sweeping technological changes brought by the growing adoption of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and other future-oriented technologies. The Retreat forms part of our constant endeavour to ensure that the youth are equal to the task of assuming leadership of the media sector, which is witnessing transformation at a very rapid pace. We are strongly invested in ensuring that emerging media professionals are active participants in shaping the industry landscape.”

The retreat generated a range of ideas to bolster media talent including training programmes, and talent recognition initiatives. As part of building on the success of the Youth Media Forum and generating tangible outcomes, the Dubai Media Council will be developing a strategy to address gaps and achieve the objectives outlined in the brainstorming session.

The inaugural Youth Media Forum held today featured a riveting line-up of sessions and workshops led by experts from international media organisations, with deliberations focusing on the key factors that drive excellence and capacity development of young media professionals in a fast-evolving media landscape.

Sessions at the Youth Media Forum discussed ways of equipping the next generation of media professionals with the capabilities required to adeptly navigate the challenges of the media environment of the future.