Smart Dubai’s Search for Excellence

Vision of future Dubai described by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed, the President of the UAE in the book entitled „My vision” consists of ambitious and comprehensive goals, encompassing both economic indicators and citizens’ sentiments. Happiness lies at the heart of Dubai strategy and it is not an empty slogan. Through the initiative of „Happiness Meter” Dubai gathers feedback about customer experiences and satisfaction from services delivered by public and private sector.

The aim to become the world’s leading hub for finance, business and IT center of excellence requires clear vision and great leadership. Especially when the progress is meant to go hand in hand with sustainability.

„Excellence for us does not refer only to the ability to deliver outstanding service, but to the ability to provide it on a sustainable basis” – His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed

Over last 10 years Dubai put a lot of effort to become a futuristic city with flying taxi, autonomous cars, automated ports, warehouses and services implementing state-of-the-art technology innovations, like the one introduced at Dubai’s Hamdan Bin Mohammed Smart University. The technology implemented there harnesses Philips lighting-based indoor positioning for indoor navigation. As the lighting software is integrated with sensors detecting people’s presence as well as with the class schedule and Building Management System, it allows controlling ventilation and air conditioning based on presence of the students in a given room. Light settings can be also personalized directly from a smartphone application.

UAE world-class infrastructure makes it possible to integrate services through multimodal, seamless connectivity via sea, air, road and rail networks. Integrated trade and logistics improves business efficiency, supply chain management and facilitates trade across sectors. By 2030 Dubai plans to automate 25% of its transport as well as 25% of its police force. Introduction of the open platform for blockchain will pave the way to use this technology in banking, smart energy or mobility services. And when it comes to transport, there are continous improvements to make mobility seamless and convenient, even in such a hot climate. Air conditioning in the metro works flawlessly and is extremely efficient. Also with the use of application you can order bus on demand and when visiting Dubai second time you do not have to wait in a queue for passport control. Using pre-authenticated passport a visitor can enter directly through a smart gate, having their pupils scanned.

Another digitalisation initiative undertaken by Dubai government is introducing smart plates with digital screens, GPS and transmitters being able to communicate in real-time in case of emergency, traffic, stealing a car. The trial for digital plates will automate processes of payments for fines, parking and will make it possible to change a plate number directly via Roads and Transport Authority’s website – without necessity to go to the office. What a time saver!

Government also aims to boost economic growth by allowing SMEs paying fees in instalments and in general reduce operational costs. The directives are focused on facilitating investments and technology transfer, among others by attracting the world’s best startups. Dubai Internet City – Middle East Silicon Valley – where big tech and ICT giants are headquartered, incentivizes foreign companies to establish their subsidiaries in Free Zone by tax allowances like: no corportate, income tax for 50 years, tax-free repatriation of profits, no custom duties.

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EXPO 2020 under construction

Apart from having the largest exhibition center (World Trade Center) Dubai will be a host for The World Expo 2020. The event will showcase innovations which address global challenges – mobility, renewable energy and sustainability are one of the main subjects of this international event. To assure easy access to Expo for visitiors from 170 countries, Dubai started building the world’s largest airport – the Al Maktoum International Airport. It will be spread on the 438-hectares area of Dubai South and the extended metro line will be capable of taking 46.000 passengers per hour.

EXPO 2020 scale model

The fact that Dubai won the competition to prepare the next World Expo can be linked to the ongoing Dubai’s strategy of exceeding customers expectations and setting new quality standards. As we read in „My vision”:

„True excellence does not come from being superior to others, but it means surpassing oneself time and again. This is achieved by going the extra mile when one believes they have reached the end of the road”.

As a company operating in smart city ecosystem, we take the position that the road for excellence never ends and the innovation journey is an ongoing process of continous improvements.

Iwona Skowronek