Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large
Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, Minister of Development and International Cooperation, with, from left, Richard Dean, moderator; Ian Fairservice, managing partner of Motivate publishing house; and Ali Jaber, dean of the Mohammed bin Rashid School of Communications at the American University in Dubai. They spoke at the launch of the English edition of Flashes of Thought by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice-President and Ruler of Dubai. Courtesy Asdaa
Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, Minister of Development and International Cooperation, with, from left, Richard Dean, moderator; Ian Fairservice, managing partner of Motivate publishing house; and Ali Jaber, dean of the Mohammed bin Rashid School of Communications at the American University in Dubai. They spoke at the launch of the English edition of Flashes of Thought by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice-President and Ruler of Dubai. Courtesy Asdaa

Beware men lest women deprive you of leadership positions, warns UAE Vice President

The role of women in UAE society was a hot topic at the launch of the English-language version of Flashes of Thought, a collection of speeches by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid.

DUBAI // Men are at risk of being left in women’s shadows as the latter thrive in education and industry, according to Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai.

The role of women in society was discussed in detail at the launch on Monday of the English edition of Flashes of Thought, a collection of speeches given by Sheikh Mohammed at the Government Summit 2013.

In one excerpt, he warns men to step up as their female counterparts are forging their way forward.

“Beware men lest women deprive you of all the leadership positions of the country,” he said.

Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, Minister of Development and International Cooperation, was one of the panellists at the event, held at the American University in Dubai. She praised the growing opportunities for women.

“Women are everywhere, they are pilots, government officials. It’s great for people to see this change for women,” she said.

Sheikha Lubna, who became the first female Cabinet member in 2004, said Sheikh Mohammed’s vision was to see “how you use women as an engine of change to drive society”.

Eighty-five per cent of Sheikh Mohammed’s personal staff are Emirati women.

“I personally could not manage my daily work without women,” he says in the book.

It is estimated that 30 per cent of the UAE’s leadership is female and that 65 per cent of government jobs are held by women.

Ian Fairservice, managing partner of Motivate publishing house, was also on the panel.

“It’s a warning to men that only 15 per cent of Sheikh Mohammed’s staff is men, that only 30 per cent of graduates are men,” he said. “It’s an example being set here. It’s a stereotypical image that Arab women are not empowered.

“If we could see the same example being set by our neighbours in the region, that would change things very positively.”

Ali Jaber, dean of the Mohammed bin Rashid School of Communications at AUD, said 80 per cent of the school’s students were female, which reflected the desire to have women play a key role in the future of the country.

“Sheikh Mohammed looks further ahead and in setting up the school of communication, he truly believes that the new generation is going to be the leading generation of our times in the Arab world, and it’s these students who will be the future shapers and makers of Arab public opinion, who will really matter in spreading the energy that Sheikh Mohammed has been spreading across the Arab world,” Mr Jaber said.

Topics discussed by the panel included the chapter on risk-taking and calculated risk-taking as perceived by Sheikh Mohammed, who has been at the helm of some of the world’s most daring projects, from the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower, to the Palm Jumeirah.

“We were told that building towers in the sea was impossible,” he says in the book. “Today we have the biggest man-made island in the world with hundreds of towers housing thousands of people.”

Sheikha Lubna said Sheikh Mohammed’s vision and fearlessness were infectious.

“There is no joy if you don’t take risks. Life is not an amusement park,” she said.

A student read a passage from the book that states: “Impossible is nowhere to be found in the dictionary of the UAE ... I have no clue who invented the word impossible but it was clearly someone looking for an easy life, a life of sleep and inactivity.”

The book has been published in Arabic, English and Braille, and will be printed in six more languages by the end of the year.

“He is a great living example to take courage,” Sheikha Lubna said. “And also leave a legacy for others. The book is the journey of all of us.”

mswan@thenational.ae

Back to the top

More articles


Editor's Picks

 Sarah Geronimo. Courtesy: FLASH Entertainment

Sarah Geronimo brings her star power to Abu Dhabi this weekend

Ahead of her Abu Dhabi concert on Thursday night, we take a look at the Filipina singer Sarah Geronimo’s extraordinary career.

 Fatema holds a picture of her son Nurul Karim as she poses for a photograph in front of her slum house in Savar. Fatema lost her son Nurul Karim and her daughter Arifa, who were working on the fifth floor of Rana Plaza when it collapsed on April 24, 2013. All photos Andrew Biraj / Reuters

These women know the real price of cheap high street fashion

Survivors of the world's worst garment factory accident, struggle to rebuild their lives from the rubble of the Rana Plaza collapse as Bangladesh prepares to mark the first anniversary of the disaster.

 Visitors look at the medieval inventor Al Jazari’s water-powered Elephant Clock. The clock is on show at the 1001 Inventions exhibition at Sharjah Expo Centre. Photos Antonie Robertson / The National

1001 Inventions: in praise of Islam’s gifts to the world

Down the centuries, from camera obscura to designing a sail that allowed early seafarers to tack into the wind, Muslim scientists have made many significant contributions to science. Rym Ghazal and Asmaa Al Hameli visit an exhibition in Sharjah that celebrates those contributions

 Mumbai Indians fans cheer they team on the opening match between Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL 2014 at Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath K / The National

Earn cash back with the IPL cricket in the UAE

Dunia finance promotion allows cricket lovers to earn up to 6 per cent unlimited cash back on any spending they make on a day when an IPL match is played in the UAE.

 Iranian workers at the Iran Khodro auto plant in Tehran on March 18. Maryam Rahmanian for The National

Iran’s love of cars survives devastating sanctions

Sanctions and energy subsidy reductions might have hurt the Iranian automotive industry. But car makers at one factory are still optimistic, Yeganeh Salehi reports from Tehran

 This comparison image shown on Reddit annotated the objects with vehicles from the movies.

Disney confirms that Star Wars: Episode 7 is filming in Abu Dhabi desert

Disney yesterday confirmed that the filming of Star Wars: Episode 7 is taking place in the desert in Abu Dhabi.

Events

To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National