UAE leading proactive march towards future: Omar Al Olama

UAE leading proactive march towards future: Omar Al Olama

ABU DHABI, 30th January, 2023 (WAM) -- Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy, and Remote Work Applications, and Member of the Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence's (MBZUAI) Advisory Board, said that the UAE, under the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, is leading a proactive future in driving digital transformation and adopting new practices, which will build the capabilities of future generations.

In his statement on the occasion of honouring the first batch of MBZUAI's graduates, Omar Al Olama, highlighted UAE's focus on attracting and training AI talents and said graduates from MBZUAI will support the country's AI 2030 strategy. He emphasised that individuals specialising in AI will play a crucial role in the next leap forward for humanity.

Another top official also emphasised the MBZUAI's contributions to the UAE's  AI Strategy, while congratulating the first batch of the University's graduates. “The impact of artificial intelligence will be felt across the public and private sectors, enabling new efficiencies and unlocking novel solutions to long-standing challenges. The graduates of MBZUAI are competent and capable of leading the UAE’s efforts to advance the 4IR and achieve its AI Strategy 2030," said Jassem Mohammed Buatabh Al Zaabi, Chairman of the Department of Finance, and member of the MBZUAI's Advisory Board. 

"I look forward to witnessing their continued success as they advance within their respective fields," Al Zaabi added. 

Meanwhile, the Board of Trustees of the MBZUAI said the University has succeeded in attracting the world’s brightest minds in AI and they would make a positive impact on the AI sector. 

Professor Anil K. Jain said, “With a focus on education and research alongside a commitment to addressing real-world challenges through AI innovation, it’s rewarding to see the many ways in which MBZUAI’s first milestone commencement is fulfilling the university’s remit to meet the needs of the nation.”

He added that in a relatively short timeframe, the University has established a globally ranked programme that attracts some of the brightest minds in the field of AI as faculty and students. 

“The commencement event enables us to reflect on what’s been achieved and the significant opportunities ahead to address important societal problems related to energy, environment, health and poverty,” Professor Jain said. 

Daniela Rus said the prevalence of women among the first graduating class of MBZUAI speaks to the critical nature of gender diversity in this field, contributing to a less biased, more balanced, and mature sector as a whole. 

“From research to the application of AI in industry, women – including these first graduates of MBZUAI – have a vital role to play in the UAE and beyond,” Rus noted. 

Sir Michael Brady said MBZUAI's initial cohort of graduates have tremendous potential to make a measurable impact – not least in how AI can benefit the region’s growing healthcare sector. 

Already, this class has presented academic papers at the internationally leading Medical Imaging Conference (MICCAI), where competition for acceptance is extraordinarily high, he pointed out. 

“This underscores the global caliber of the research underway at MBZUAI. From the delivery of more accurate medical diagnoses to assessing the health of major organs, these students are set to contribute materially to the future of healthcare through AI,” Professor Brady explained. 

Dr. Kai Fu Lee, Chairman & CEO of Sinovation Ventures, said there has never been a more ideal moment for MBZUAI’s first graduating class to channel their newfound skills and insights into addressing some of the most pressing opportunities for AI. 

“From life sciences to food security to cleaner energy, critical issues both locally and globally are waiting for them to tap into. With an emphasis on diversity and cross-cultural collaboration, this group of new graduates has the potential to help define the role and innovation of AI in many domains in the coming decade,” Dr. Lee said.