University of Bradford Establishes Dubai Advisory Board to foster growth and diversification in the GCC


The University of Bradford, renowned for its global impact on social mobility, has taken a significant step towards expanding its influence and enhancing its offerings with the formation of the Dubai Advisory Board (DAB).

“The establishment of the Dubai Advisory Board marks a significant milestone in our journey towards inclusive education and equal opportunities. We aspire to be the destination where individuals can truly make a difference and create a positive impact on society. The expertise and guidance of the Board members will be invaluable in realizing this vision,” said Professor Zahir Irani, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bradford.

Recognizing the need to meet the increasing demand for professional skillsets, the University's Executive Team, led by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, has formed the Dubai Advisory Board (DAB). Comprised of distinguished industry experts representing various verticals, including Google, Johnson Controls International, LinkedIn, Emirates Global Aluminium, General Motors, and others, DAB aims to facilitate the co-creation of future-focused curriculum that align with the skill and capacity-building needs of the UAE and the GCC region.

“During the advisory board meeting, we discussed crucial aspects including scalability, success criteria, and execution plans. To enhance collaboration, I suggest forming a tech ecosystem with partners and appointing a university champion. Partnership opportunities involve students building relationships with board members and accessing roles and internships,” said Bilal Ibdah – Head of Partner Engineering for the Middle East, Africa & Turkey, Google.

“Google's involvement brings value through exposure to advanced tech and training resources, benefiting both local and global businesses. The advisory board's effectiveness is an initial step; I look forward to measurable outcomes as we progress.”

DAB is meeting regularly to assist the University in gaining a comprehensive understanding of Dubai's requirements and to collaboratively develop professional education programmes that address local and regional human capacity building needs. This collaborative effort ensures that the University's offerings remain relevant, timely, and impactful.

“The DAB is a major strategic initiative for the University of Bradford School of Management to increase our impact on social and economic growth globally. Given our School’s established presence in Dubai delivering our Executive MBA over the last 25 years, it is time to build on this success and to explore the provision of our pioneering programmes and building new business partnerships with leading industry partners in the region” said Professor Sankar Sivarajah, Dean of School of Management of the University of Bradford

“Strategically, the discussion centered around the university's expansion plans in the region. A comprehensive range of recommendations emerged, including market diversification, product innovation, and operational enhancements,” said Tarik Abd-Rabu, General Manager at General Motors. “Addressing industry dynamics, the meeting illuminated the importance of staying abreast of trends, competition, and market dynamics. Specific areas of focus emerged, including marketing strategies, digital transformation, sustainability, and global accreditation.”

“We also discussed formalizing business partnerships to nurture joint research projects and knowledge-sharing initiatives as well as to co-host conferences and workshops for dynamic idea exchange,” Abd-Rabu pointed out.


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