The International Government Communication Centre (IGCC) is the first specialised facility in the field of government communication, both in the Arab region and worldwide. It is a qualitative and strategic initiative, besides being a scientific, intellectual, knowledge-based, and specialised research establishment
IGCF is one of the key initiatives by the Sharjah Government Media Bureau. It was first launched in 2012, and since then it has been organised annually. IGCF is the first-of-its-kind platform in the region that brings together global government communication experts to explore best practices in the field.
The Sharjah Government Communication Award is an unparalleled initiative that was launched in September 2012 Under the patronage of His Highness (H.H.) Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, UAE Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah.
Fast-moving and evolving trends in digital technologies are leading to a radical change in citizen expectations. Governments are increasingly required to have greater capacity to understand and respond to complex and frequently competing issues, and to provide services that are both tailored to individuals’ needs and aligned with national priorities. Governments also need to attract and retain the talent needed for the data age. This need for data is quickly becoming a central theme that applies to all aspects of our evolving digital society.
Key Discussion Points
At the outset of the 20th century, machine intelligence was a fantasy sought after by sci-fi authors and a handful of computer scientists. Today, however, artificial intelligence not only exists, but its applications can already be seen in our daily lives. While the private sector was the driving force behind this development revolution, the role of government in utilising AI to the greater good is still unclear – especially in the context of using this technology to engage with wider societies. Tanmay Bakshi is the world’s youngest AI expert and an IBM AI Champion, and through this session, he will aim to address a number of key questions about real-life applications of AI in relation to government communication.
With the rapid generational shift to Millennials and Gen Z, governments, more than ever, need to implement immediate changes to their leadership structures (and government communication) to adapt to the digital millennia and the rise of virtual communities. As one of the UAE and GCC’s youngest (female) government leaders, H.E. Noura Al Kaabi will discuss the role young leadership plays in shaping governments to be future-ready.
Many experts globally believe open data to be key to accelerated progress and sustainable innovation that is accessible to many. In reality, however, data monopolies by a limited number of companies mean that only those who can afford it can get access to key data. Sir Timothy Berners-Less is in a position to discuss the future of open data and the world wide web which he created and talk about what he aspired this tool to achieve, while addressing key rights, such as net neutrality, privacy, and openness of the internet.
Today’s world is one of rapid innovations and development in the field of communication. However, many overlook the importance of building and developing infrastructure and services that enable and empower such innovations. As the UAE and the world approach the launch of 5G networks, this will pave the way for new technologies and innovations that were out of reach up until recently.
The “Good Country Index” is one of the best international indexes that measure each country’s contribution to the common good of humanity, and what it takes away, relative to its size. It uses a wide range of data from the U.N. and other international organisations that include contributions to science and technology, culture, international peace and security, world order, planet and climate, prosperity and equality, and health and wellbeing. As many of these attributes are linked to societal engagement, Simon will discuss how government communication can be a force for good towards building a better country, in addition to talking about the ways governments can use communication to develop a strong national identity around the world.
Alex Aiken is the Executive Director for Government Communications, UK. During this session, he will discuss current challenges facing government communication, and talk about future opportunities for communication in an age of hyper-connectivity using social media.
The session will address the “era of exponential change” in light of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Jason Silva will talk about achievements made by humanity throughout the ages, their impact on the present and how they continue to dramatically change the future at an unprecedented speed. The speaker will also highlight paradoxes of technologies resulting from the human mind’s creativity and those inspired by other technologies.
The new government communication function will take significant steps towards adopting 21st century practices, creating a more skilled, less bureaucratic, more tech-enabled and unified government communication profession.
Governments need to be better at using all communication channels, where digital interaction plays an increasingly important role. Press releases are not the only tool in the box. There are more diverse means of communication: with a growing role for faster responses and more visual comms through infographics. There is a real need for cross-government collaboration and for things to be done efficiently in-house. There is also a need for government entities to be able to deliver creative campaigns, rather than simply managing them. The world over, business models have changed, and government service delivery is also transforming.
Women play an essential role in developing many sectors, achieving growth and keeping up to date with the constant changes of the digital age, which has been empowering them. A number of distinguished female leaders have substantially contributed to developing digital media and other government communication sectors, while playing an important role in the enrichment of social media content and preservation of cultural and social privacy.
This session will cover skills that youth must acquire to succeed in the future. With the rapid changes happening around the world, thanks to Artificial Intelligence and the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the youth might find themselves in a new world without a reference to what they should do to adapt to these changes. But as the digital millennium sets, many opportunities and communication tools now exist to help equip the youth with the new skills needed for this age.
Zone: Sharjah Press Club
Zone: Sharjah Press Club
This session sheds light on the essential role played by new media in serving humanitarian issues. The session will host representatives of various social networks and news channels, as well as journalists, to create a positive interactive dialogue.
During this session, the Harvard Business Review team will discuss a number of topics included in the special issue of the magazine prepared for the Forum. The magazine’s editorial team will speak to students and attendees on the latest in communication technologies and how they are reshaping government communication.
Zone: Interactive Platform 02
Zone: Sharjah Press Club Platform
The session focuses on media charisma, how a media professional can make a positive impact, characteristics of a media personality and skills that must be found in a successful media professional.
Zone: Sharjah Children Centres Platform
Zone: Interactive Platform 01
The workshop will share marketing success stories from government entities of all types from around the world. Participants will become familiar with the marketing toolbox and come to understand how these tools can be used to engender citizen support for your entity, increase utilisation of your products and services and influence positive public behaviours, while increasing revenues and decreasing operating costs. The workshop will offer roadmaps on how to gather citizen input and evaluate communication efforts. Simply put, this workshop will empower participants to build the “high-tech, high-touch” government entity of the future and deliver more value for their budget.
H.E. Amb. Dr. Sa’ed Radaideh will launch his book “Governance from an Arabic Perspective” for the first time during the Forum. In his book, H.E. tackles the meaning of governance in the context of government and away from corporate governance (the original meaning of this term) and will tackle a number of key components of governance including participation, accountability, justice and fairness, the rule of law, transparency, productivity and efficiency.
Around 50 students from Sharjah and the UAE will be invited to participate in this session to debate and discuss the increasingly important role the youth play in shaping the discussion agenda, and how the generational shift is changing media consumption habits.
The workshop will share marketing success stories from government entities of all types around the world. Participants will become familiar with the marketing toolbox and come to understand how these tools can be used to engender citizen support for an entity, increase utilisation of its products and services and influence positive public behaviours, while increasing revenues and decreasing operating costs.
The workshop will offer roadmaps on how to gather citizen input and evaluate communication efforts. Simply put, this workshop will empower participants to build the “high-tech, high-touch” government entity of the future and deliver more value for their budget.
During this session, Heath will discuss best global practices for inspiring citizens through government communication to achieve better societal engagement and positive change. He will discuss a unique, yet simple model built around a simple question, “why?”.
During this session, Dr. Mohammed will discuss the concept of digital diplomacy as a new form of diplomatic communication that is characterized as open, direct, and interactive. Digital diplomacy provides governments with important opportunities to reach global audiences using interactive multimedia messaging on policy, direction, and positions on local and global affairs.
Zone: Workshops 02
This workshop will take a closer look at the role of youth engagement and how it impacts global development and government communication. Youth audiences have more tools than ever to be engaged and take action on issues that matter to them, and this workshop will explore how communicators and journalists can use best practices to reach these audiences.
Zone: Sharjah Children Centres Platform
10:30 – 11:30
12:30 – 13:30
Zone: Workshops 01
Organised by: Sharjah Press Club
This two-day intensive workshop is designed to provide early career journalists with the necessary tools and sharpen their skills towards producing accurate and comprehensive stories, in accordance with Reuters professional guidelines. Practical exercises form the core of this programme, designed to spur the participants into improving their basic news-hunting and writing skills, with emphasis on accuracy, storytelling and structuring feature stories.
Zone: Workshops 02
This workshop will take a closer look at effective digital engagement strategies in relation to global issues, discuss best practices for robust communication and journalism, and explore a landscape analysis of the current trajectory for digital communications.
Zone: Sharjah Youth Council Platform
Organised by: Sharjah Press Club