Festival of Thinkers, UAE, 12 – 15th November 2011
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Our Vice Chancellor, Dr. Tayeb Kamali has asked me to write to you with regard to our upcoming Festival of Thinkers event due to take place during November 12 ? 15th in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
He wishes to extend an invitation to up to three of your students studying in a Master?s Program to attend the event. The Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) would cover all costs, i.e. accommodation, visas, meals, local transportation etc. The only expense to your students would be the airfare.
I have provided a summary below of the main focus on Festival of Thinkers which may advise you on which students to nominate. I also encourage you to visit our website www.fot.hct.ac.ae where you will find further detailed information.
Festival of Thinkers is a unique event designed by HCT in collaboration with lateral thinking expert Dr. Edward de Bono.
It is an opportunity for students, the leaders of tomorrow, to interact formally and informally with, and learn from, some of the world?s leading thinkers, including many Nobel laureates. The underlying philosophy of this event is to inspire promising youth to innovate, invent and to use constructive and lateral thinking while exploring potential solutions for the world?s challenges in an interactive format. The Festival discusses critical challenges and opportunities for the world, such as:
· Research and innovation
· Sustainable development
· Health and wellness
· The economic future of the world.
The inaugural Festival of Thinkers was held in 2005. Held biennially since then, the most recent Festival of Thinkers took place at several campuses of the Higher Colleges of Technology around the UAE, from 2-4 November 2009. At this conference, 300 young scholars and top university students from 16 countries in the Middle East had the privilege to sit with 11 Nobel Laureates and 150 of the world?s best minds in round-table settings to discuss a range of different themes over 3 days.
At the opening of the 2009 Festival, H.E. Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, Minister for Higher Education and Scientific Research in the UAE and Chancellor of the Higher Colleges of Technology said:
The Festival of Thinkers is based upon the premise that the bringing together of promising students with some of the world’s recognized leaders in innovation and creativity will enrich both groups and lead to an even brighter future for our global society.
In the history of the Festival of Thinkers, 40 Nobel Laureates, such as Dr. Wangari Maathai of Kenya, Dr Shirin Ebadi of Iran, Prof. Muhammad Yunus of Bangladesh, Prof. Murray Gell-Mann, and Prof. R.K. Pachauri have participated. The Festival?s thinkers have included a broad range of more than 250 world thinkers, whose experience and expertise covered most fields of human endeavor; this includes top CEOs of major global corporations, artists such as Placido Domingo, media leaders such as Ted Sorensen, socio-political leaders such as Dr. Castro-Diaz and Cherie Blair, sports stars such as basketball player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, adventurers such as Dr. Bertrand Piccard and the like.
If you think your students would be interested in participating in Festival of Thinkers, I would be grateful if you would send their names and email address direct to me and I will then take over all the necessary communication with them leading up to the prestigious event and oversee their care during the UAE visit.
Executive Organizing Committee Member for Festival of Thinkers 2011
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