In October 2014, Sheikh Mohammed launched the UAE National Innovation Strategy (PDF, 2.59MB) with the aim of making the UAE one of the most innovative nations in the world within seven years.
The strategy will have four tracks.
- The first track will establish a stimulating environment for innovation in the form of supportive institutions and laws. It will shape specialised entities such as innovation incubators as well as technological infrastructure to fuel innovation in all sectors. It will also focus on research and development in various innovation fields.
- The second track will develop government innovation by institutionalising innovative practices with the support of an integrated system of modern tools. The strategy requires all government entities to reduce spending by one per cent and dedicate the savings to research and innovation projects. National training and education programmes on innovation will also be launched.
- The third track will encourage private sector innovation by stimulating companies to establish innovation and scientific research centres, adopt new technologies and develop innovative products and services. The UAE will attract pioneering international firms in key innovation sectors, establish innovation communities and zones and support applied research in areas of national priority. It will also enhance the UAE's position as an international centre to test innovations.
- The fourth track will prepare individuals with highly innovative skills by concentrating on science, technology, engineering and mathematics, including the creation of educational material for schools and universities. The aim is to establish a national culture that encourages innovation and entrepreneurship through partnerships between the public, private and media sectors.
The framework for the strategy is structured around the following three key pillars:
- An innovation-enabling environment
The strategy seeks to develop an environment that promotes and enables innovation by developing the right regulatory framework, providing comprehensive enabling services, enhancing the technology infrastructure and ensuring the availability of investments and incentives.
- Innovation champions
The strategy seeks to create innovation champions in individuals, companies, institutions and government.
- Innovation priority sectors
The strategy targets stimulating innovation in seven sectors. They are:
- renewable energy
The first phase includes 30 national initiatives to be completed within three years, which include:
- new legislation
- innovation incubators
- investment in specialised skills
- private-sector incentives
- international research partnerships
- an innovation drive within government.
Updated on 30 May 2019