First INSEAD Leadership Summit in the Middle East

Published January 17th, 2010 - 11:19 GMT

Under the patronage of H.H. General Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, INSEAD, one of the world's leading business schools, today held its first Leadership Summit Middle East. More than 300 delegates from around the world and GCC attended, including H.E. Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education and Research, and H.E. Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman of Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC). 

Also attending the Summit, with its theme 'Leadership in a Changing World: From Dreams into Action,’ was H.E. Dr Ahmed Mubarak Ali Al Mazrouei, Deputy Secretary General of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council and Chairman, Health Authority of Abu Dhabi and; Mrs. Fatima Al Jaber, COO of the Al Jaber Group. Sponsors TDIC and Booz & Company were represented in the panel discussion on leading innovation. Significant participants from local organisations included Mubadala Development Company, Abu Dhabi Media Company, Executive Affairs Authority, Abu Dhabi Education Council and Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank.

Topics discussed during the day ranged from Learning in and from the Arab World, Reconciling Performance with Progress, and Leading Innovation presented by INSEAD faculty, and panellists including H.E. Ms Najla Al-Awadhi, Deputy CEO, Dubai Media Incorporated; Dr Franz Humer, Chairman, Roche Holding Ltd, Chairman, Diageo, and Chairman, INSEAD Board of Directors; and Mr. Sherif El Diwany, Director, Head of Middle East and Arab Business Council, World Economic Forum.

Commenting about INSEAD’s flagship event, Frank Brown, Dean of INSEAD, said: "INSEAD's Leadership Summit is in its fourth year but this is the first time we have held the event in the Middle East. The eyes of the global business community are moving from West to East and, being the Business School for the World, it was right that we focused our attentions on this fast-emerging regional player. Abu Dhabi is becoming a dynamic business hub in the region for a number of sectors and it has been most interesting to facilitate a forum for information and exchange of ideas among the key business leaders from the UAE and GCC on a number of topics."

Lee Tabler, CEO, TDIC said: “We are great supporters of INSEAD and share their values of connecting people, cultures and ideas from around the world. The arrival of INSEAD and other educational institutions marks a major milestone in the evolution of Abu Dhabi into an educational capital for the region.”

H.E. Dr. Mugheer Khamis Al Khaili, Director General of ADEC congratulated INSEAD on its successful summit, remarking, “To have the presence of one of the most renowned and prestigious business schools in the world in Abu Dhabi is an integral part of ADEC’s 10 Year Strategic Plan that is designed to stimulate our future intellectual growth as well as the economic and social development of the Emirate.”

“ADEC looks forward to continuing its strong partnership with INSEAD and welcoming future forums such as this that will help us continually improve our approach to business, government and academia.” added H.E. Dr Al-Khaili.

Key themes of the full-day summit included innovation and how it takes place within corporations and what can be done to foster greater innovation in a corporate setting. Discussions included some of the methods being employed by the region's leadership, and human capital which are coming to the fore as a source of promise and sustainability.

“This inaugural Middle East Leadership Summit proved to be an excellent forum for business leaders and industry experts from across the region to share their thoughts and ideas on how the region can sustain its phenomenal social and economic growth, through diversity and innovation,” said Joe Saddi, Chairman of Booz & Company. “Booz & Company is committed to furthering education and knowledge on a grass roots level, by supporting events such as these.” 

INSEAD recently launched its world-renowned Executive MBA programme in Abu Dhabi in preparation for its new intake of students from the region in October 2010. 

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