DUBAI: The current coronavirus pandemic is an unrivalled opportunity for improvement – that was the message delivered last week by His Excellency Dr. Ali Bin Sebaa Al Marri, Executive President of the Mohammed bin Rashid School of Government (MBRSG).
Speaking at the first in a series of live Instagram sessions that MBRSG has launched to stimulate conversation on the effects of the coronavirus, His Excellency stated that while the outbreak is a challenge facing allcountries around the world, it also represents an unprecedented opportunity to develop systems of government and enhance the operations of the private sector.
Topics for the MBRSG sessions, which are being conducted every Monday and Wednesday, include finding solutions for the issues created by the virus, studying its effects on key sectors, assessing its threat to business continuity, and exploring the potential opportunities it is giving rise to – both now and once the pandemic is over.
“Governments are responsible for protecting their people in times of crisis and all institutions need to understand the importance of risk management and increase their preparedness to deal with each and every scenario. The current crisis has created a novel situation for the UAE and the region, which we are dealing with for the first time, so we have an array of new experiences to learn from and to share,”said H.E. Al Marri.
“Our wise leadership encourages us to turn every challenge into an opportunity and how we dealwith the coronavirus pandemic should be no different. From our current position we can formulate solutions that can be used in the event of future crises and emergencies – this approach should beauniversal one to be employed at both the level of government and at the level of individuals, family and society,” H.E. added.
His Excellency further stated that the federal and local government, along with the private sector, had an indispensable role to play in activating digital transformation and upgrading technological infrastructure to facilitate work and study from home. He pointed out that this transformation enhances the flexibility of government and supports innovation that ensures that sectors run as efficiently as in normal times.He also extended his gratitude to the doctors, paramedics, nurses and other frontline healthcare staff who are fighting the pandemic, saying that societywill always remember their selfless efforts with a new-found and sincere appreciation.
His Excellency concluded by saying that this crisis has taught individuals how to manage time, how to work remotely, and how to accomplish tasks with high productivity using the available technical means. He stressed another positive aspect in that it is showing everyone the values of family cohesion, solidarity and commitment to the community.
Agile Government: Crisis Responses and Learning
Also, as part of MBRSG’s Instagram series, Melodena Stephens, Professor of Innovation Management at MBRSG,gave a live lecture last Wednesday under the theme ‘Agile Government: Crisis Responses and Learning.’
Starting the lecture, Professor Stephens thanked the UAE government, saying that it was managing the crisis transparently and that its handling of the situation was a global model of best practice and a benchmark for other countries to follow.
“Governments should take into considerationthree issues to enhance their resilience; firstly developing public policies in anticipation of future crises; secondly, building a communication strategy based on transparency; and thirdly, ensuring they possess the appropriate tools and mechanisms to solve the array of problems that can arise during such times,” said Professor Stephens.
“Governments must give priority to preserving human health and safety through their policies and future plans, and should focus on working with a spirit of unity. Crises such as this call for raising the degree of cooperation between all government agencies to achieve the very best results,” she added.
Professor Stephens pointed out that transparency in all crises is essential to correct false information and counter rumours. She added that in such exceptional times, governments should immediately address problems that are identified, as ignoring them or sitting on them for too long only causes them to grow in significance, making them harder to overcome down the line. MBRSG’s live Instagram sessions are being conducted every Monday and Wednesday at 7:00pm until April 29, 2020. The sessions are being streamed live on MBRSG’s official Instagram account: @MBRSGAE.
MBRSG’s live Instagram sessions are being conducted every Monday and Wednesday at 7:00pm until April 29, 2020. The sessions are being streamed live on MBRSG’s official Instagram account: @MBRSGAE.