MENA Higher Education Leadership Forum to be held under patronage of

H.E. Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan

Dubai, UAE,XXOctober, 2015:The new role of universities in promotinginnovation and supporting the growth and development of today’s knowledge based society will be the central theme of the second  MENA Higher Education Leadership Forum taking place in Abu Dhabi from 911November.

Higher education leaders and decision makers from 50 countries across the region and worldwide will assemble at the DusitThani Abu-Dhabi for the event which is being held under the patronage of  H.E. Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture, Youth, and Community.

The forum, organised under the  theme: “Towards Transformative Higher Education in the MENA Region: The Role of Innovation in the 21st Century Digital and Knowledge based Society”,will turn the spotlight on the latest innovation trends and how these are impacting higher education, while analysing the part to be played bytechnology in shaping the future of higher education.

Anintensive three-day programmewas announced today by the Dubai-based Center for Learning Innovations and Customized Knowledge Solutions (CLICKS), which is organising the forum in partnership with the Association of Arab Universities, the International Council for Open and Distance Education and the Leadership Higher Education Foundation.

It features a number of keynote addresses by an international line up of influential speakers, interactive panel discussions, debates and presentations of best practices in addition to forum workshops taking place on the opening day.

“One of our key objectives is to discuss how higher education contributes to today’s knowledge based economy and how university-based innovation and entrepreneurship is nurtured in an era driven by creativity and innovation,” said Dr. Narimane Hadj-Hamou, CEO of CLICKS who launched the bi-annual forum two years ago.

This year’s main forum focus is an appropriate and well-timed one in the UAE, with the first Innovation Week being held in Dubai from 22-28 November as part of the National Innovation Strategy launched last year by H.H.Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

“Theforum’s theme and structure has been developed to investigate various innovations and trends and how these can help shape the future of higher education in the MENA Region,” said Dr. Hadj-Hamou.

“We’re bringing togethera number of prominent experts and gurus to promote and develop a global mindset in leaders and institutions of higher education that embraces innovation and entrepreneurship at all levels, and across all functions of the institution.”

An audience of HE leaders and decision makers will includeMinistries of Higher Education and regulatory body representatives, Rectors, Chancellors, Presidents, Vice Chancellors, Provosts, Pro-Vice Chancellors and Deans; who will be involved in giving their views, sharing their ideas and expertise and engage in various debates and discussion.

“Over the three days the event will closely examine how innovation contributes and supports the achievement and sustainability of excellence in higher education for the MENA region,” said Dr. Hadj-Hamou.

The MENA Higher Education Leadership Forum, the region’s premier higher education networkevent for decisions makers, will examine entrepreneurial approaches to leading and managing higher education and discuss strategies and framework to create, nurture and sustain a culture of innovation.

Keynote speakers and panelists include Prof. Mohamed Zairi, Chairman of the European Centre for Best Practice Management, Robert Morse, Chief Data Strategist for U.S. News & World Report, Prof. David Baker, former Deputy Chair of the UK-based Joint Information Systems Committee and Dr. Kathleen S. Ives CEO & Executive Director, Online Learning Consortium.

Other expert speakers include Dr. Haifa Jamal Al LailPresident, Effat University, Saudi Arabia, Prof. Donald L. Bates, President, Gulf University for Science & Technology, Kuwait, Prof. Barry Winn, Vice-Chancellor, Sohar University, Oman, Professor TodLaursen, President, Khalifa University, UAE and Prof. M BadrAboul-Ela, Executive Director, Commission for Academic Accreditation, UAE & Vice-President, Arab Network for Quality Assurance in Higher Education.

About the Center for Learning Innovations and Customized Knowledge Solutions

As a non-for profit organisation,  the Center for Learning Innovations and Customized Knowledge Solutions (CLICKS) aims at supporting both existing and emerging Universities, Colleges and Vocational Training Institutions from across the MENA region in specific areas that are new, evolving and very much required to enable quality, innovation and academic excellence within HE.

It provides services including capacity building, knowledge transfer, consultancy in addition to both institutional and individual mentoring in areas related to leadership development, governance, quality assurance and accreditation, organizational excellence, innovative learning and teaching, strategy development , technology integration and research.

CLICKS works closely today with over 40 HEIs from across 11 countries and receive participants to its capacity building programmes from over 25 countries. CLICKS is privileged to be aligned with highly reputable international partners and experts and is guided by an international advisory board which provides sound leadership to the Center.

In line with its vision and mission, CLICKS also strives to support the establishment of networks and platforms to promote the dialogue between leaders and decisions makers from within higher education.Additional information can be found at

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