“There are a lot of affinities between the UAE and Singapore; they are both small yet highly developed and both are successful and share a lot in common with their principled and pragmatic foreign policies”, said Mr Umej Bhatia, Singapore’s ambassador to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), published in an article in The National on 19 May 2013.
In addition to strong bilateral relations between the UAE and Singapore, there is growing cooperation between Abu Dhabi and Singapore through numerous business ties over the years. In addition, Singapore is chosen as one of its four models for development along with Norway, Ireland and New Zealand in “The Abu Dhabi Economic 2030” plan. As policy makers and public sector managers in UAE are under constant pressure to deliver high quality solutions to complex social, economic and environmental problems; what are the skills needed to assess options, formulate solutions, test their effectiveness, and evaluate their impact?
Since 2005, the LKY School has trained over 500 participants from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) through our executive education programmes and training platforms. Some of these programmes include the “Dubai School of Government — Organisational Excellence in the Public Sector”, “Mohammed Bin Rashid Programme for Leadership Development (MBRCLD) — Promising Leaders Programme”, “Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) — Best Practices in Water and Electricity Governance” as well as “Crown Prince Court and General Secretariat of the Executive Council, Abu Dhabi — The Public Policy Process”.
A total of 16 participants comprising junior to middle level civil servants from the government and social sectors within Abu Dhabi attended the LKYSPP Executive Programme on Essentials of Public Policy in Abu Dhabi from 15–19 September 2013. They learnt about the interactions of political, administrative and analytical capacities in shaping policy development, to sharpen their analytical skills in leading and managing key tasks in policy development. They also improved their skills in communicating more effectively with different stakeholders in policy development and policy process. Through the programme, participants were exposed not only to Singapore’s public policy processes and public administration, but also to that of other countries in Asia and beyond. This led to interactive debates and discussions on what might be relevant and adaptable to the context in Abu Dhabi. Comparative cases and examples such as “Emiratisation”, the gender gap in education and road traffic accidents were discussed.