Director-General to Join Global Education & Skills Forum in Dubai


On 12 and 13 March 2016, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova will participate in the Global Education & Skills Forum in Dubai (United Arab Emirates) focusing on the theme “Taking greater collective responsibility for public education.” Bringing together public, private and social sector leaders, the Forum will address ways to make education everybody’s business, reconcile relevance, excellence and inclusiveness, and promote stronger linkages with the fast-changing world of work.

The Director-General will participate in a plenary panel on the Forum’s main theme, during which she will highlight the importance of partnership, innovation and increased financial commitment for the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 4. She will also share UNESCO’s vision on Education 2030, global citizenship, girls’ and women’s empowerment, the humanitarian crisis and related issues in the course of a one-on-one session moderated by Economist senior editor Ann McElvoy; interact with a group of 40 girls recognized with the Sheikh Fatima Bint Mubarak award for their academic success and commitment to social responsibility; and attend the Global Teacher Prize Awards Ceremony, during which the winner of this $1 million prize will be named from among 10 finalists announced recently by Professor Stephen Hawking. 

The GESF is an initiative of the Varkey Foundation, founded by Mr Sunny Varkey, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Education Partnerships. It has the official patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashi Al Maktoum, United Arab Emirates Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. UNESCO is an institutional partner of the Forum. 

While in Dubai, the Director-General will also take part as co-vice-chair in the meeting of the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development, which will explore the role of technology in advancing the 2030 Agenda and to improve educational outcomes, with Excellency Mr Jean-Philbert Nsengimana, Minister of Youth and Information and Communication Technologies of Rwanda as Co-Chair, and co-Vice-Chair Mr Houlin Zhao, Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union, hosted by Mr Sunny Varkey, Founder and Group Chairman of GEMS Education, and including a wide range of members of the Broadband Commission.