Israeli, Emirati experts come together for leadership workshops - analysis

The announcement comes after the first anniversary of the Abraham Accords and represents another landmark in joint work between groups from Israel and the UAE.

Emirati Norah al-Awadhi and friend, Israeli Ronny Gonen, stand facing the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, draped in their countries' flags (photo credit: ABDULLAH SAMEH HOUSSNY/@DUBAI.UAE.DXB)
Emirati Norah al-Awadhi and friend, Israeli Ronny Gonen, stand facing the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, draped in their countries' flags
(photo credit: ABDULLAH SAMEH HOUSSNY/@DUBAI.UAE.DXB)

A unique program launched as part of the annual Aqdar World Summit took place in Dubai this year amid the excitement over Expo 2020.

The United Arab Emirate’s Khalifa Empowerment Program, which is known as Aqdar, is cooperating with the Israeli Emirates Leadership Program (ILEP). The program will help foster collaborative efforts to leverage the Israeli and Emirati culture of management and leadership through mutually beneficial leadership development, organizers said in a statement.

ILEP director Eran Teboul said, “This program is another milestone in the scope and depth of relationships between Israeli and Emirati experts.”

Aqdar CEO Dr. Ibrahim Al Dabal said he is certain that this program will empower the relationship between Israel and the UAE.

“This [cooperation] is the reason we have the Khalifa Empowerment Program. I am certain that this program will empower the relationship between our two nations, by changing the experience and exchanging knowledge between our peoples. It will lead for more peace and more success among different cultures and nations.

A general view shows the area outside the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building, mostly deserted, after a curfew was imposed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Dubai, United Arab Emirates March 25, 2020. Picture taken March 25, 2020 (credit: REUTERS/TAREK FAHMY)A general view shows the area outside the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building, mostly deserted, after a curfew was imposed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Dubai, United Arab Emirates March 25, 2020. Picture taken March 25, 2020 (credit: REUTERS/TAREK FAHMY)

“Israel and the UAE serve as a model for cooperation between different nationalities and different backgrounds in one place, and I thank you for that.”

The announcement comes after the first anniversary of the Abraham Accords and represents another landmark in joint work between groups from Israel and the UAE.

“Our ability to rely on one another and share the wealth of our knowledge serves as a unique platform for genuine relationships between the peoples,” said Teboul.

“We come to this partnership with great expectations for a deep and open dialogue and for a mutual learning experience that will benefit all parties to this cooperation,” said Amnon Katz, CEO of Gaya Consulting. Gaya Consulting is an Israeli-based leading organizational consulting firm.

The program was announced as part of the Aqdar World Summit along with its slogan “Nourishing minds, flourishing nations.”

The Dubai Expo takes place under the theme of positive global citizenship. Toward that end the event included two leadership workshops led by Israeli experts in which 40 Emirati managers participated. Organizers said the managers were in government positions and participated in training sessions related to“positive leadership” and “the role of leadership in a rolling crisis.”

Aqdar and ILEP foresee this as forming part of a longer course over several years that will “include an exchange of knowledge between both Emirati and Israeli leaders and experts,” the statement said. “The initiative will work to promote the sharing of leadership best practices among Israeli and Emirati experts as a foundation for strengthening relationships between the peoples in light of the growing partnerships surrounding the Abraham Accords.”

This will leverage Israeli and Emirati cultures of management and leadership and also provide local and regional leaders with tools to cope in disruptive environments.

The statement said the initiative will focus on “collaborating in the development of young leadership, including but not limited to technologically savvy environments.” This means placing focus on cultivating the self-awareness of leaders.

Aqdar is well known for its other work in the UAE. According to the UAE Ministry of Education, the Khalifa Empowerment Program Aqdar has cooperated with the ministry on smart learning programs for libraries as part of the recent Abu Dhabi International Book Fair.

The Israel pavilion at the Dubai Expo opened in the beginning of October. It is one of many recent Israel-UAE cooperative events that have taken place which are building on the success of the Abraham Accords.