The fourth industrial revolution will be led by women – they have the power to learn, adapt and excel to bring innovations into the future.
Dubai, UAE, 17 February 2020: An engaging panel discussion held between employees from the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) shed light on the future of innovation in energy at the Global Women’s Forum (GWFD) 2020. The two day GWFD 2020 held at the Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai, UAE, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates, and Ruler of Dubai, concluded today.
Moderating the session was Marwa Al-Siyabi, Associate at Squire Patton Boggs. The session’s participants from DEWA included Matar Almehairi, Chief Innovation Officer; Dr Aaesha Alnuaimi, Director of Solar Innovation Centre; Dr Hesham Ismail, senior researcher – 4IR; and Samia Almudharreb, electrical engineer and DEWA scholar. The session saw the participants share their personal achievements across solar innovation, R&D and the fourth industrial revolution, whilst also examining how they work towards the advancement of women on a daily basis.
During the discussion, Dr. Aaesha Alnuaimi underscored the importance of passion, dedication and self-confidence, on her path to helping her achieve her goals – in addition to key support from those around her. “I’m incredibly grateful to our wise leadership, who supported us in sending us abroad to become experts in the solar field. Upon my return to the UAE, I was immensely proud to be among the first to fabricate solar cells in the country”, explained Alnuaimi.
Touching on his work to help advance women within the R&D centre at DEWA, Dr. Hesham Ismail cited the importance of making room for women within fields typically dominated by men. “My advice to all young women out there is to celebrate your failures. Even when something does not go to plan – there is so much that can be gleaned from every experience. We must celebrate and learn from these experiences to come up with even better solutions and outcomes”, explained Ismail.
Examining the role of women in innovation for the future, DEWA veteran of over 20 years Matar Almehairi shed light on the fact that countless valuable inventions that surround us today were created by women. “Within my IT department, 90% of our staff are women – and we’ve seen an immense amount of dedication from them across the board. Even with working mothers, whom we afford the flexibility to work from home, commitment, passion and ability to deliver never falters”, explained Almehairi. “Women are going to be at the forefront of the fourth industrial revolution, representing formidable competition for all those within the sector,” he continued.
As the youngest person on the panel, Samia Almudharreb highlighted her positive experience with DEWA so far: “The management and leadership always want to put women in the spotlight – they don’t discriminate and push women forward for opportunities just as much as our male counterparts,” shared Almudharreb.
Global Women’s Forum Dubai 2020 was organised by Dubai Women Establishment, which is led by Her Highness Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of the UAE Gender Balance Council and wife of HH Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs.
Building on its theme, ‘The Power of Influence’, Global Women’s Forum Dubai 2020 discussed how effective policies and partnerships in four key areas – Government, Economy, Society, and the Future – can further women’s positive impact for a better future.
Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) was formed on 1 January, 1992, by a decree issued by the late Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum to merge Dubai Electricity Company and Dubai Water Department, which had been operating independently before then. Both organisations were established by the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum in 1959. Dubai Government fully supported the Electricity Company and the Water Department to provide Dubai’s citizens and residents with a continuous and reliable supply of electricity and water. Since then, DEWA has made considerable achievements, to be ranked as one of the best utilities in the world. DEWA provides services today to more than 900,000 customers with a happiness rate that reached 95% in 2018.
The UAE, represented by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), has maintained its first global ranking, for the third consecutive year, with scores of 100% in all Getting Electricity indicators in the World Bank’s Doing Business 2020 report. The report measures the ease of doing business in 190 economies around the world. DEWA achieved competitive results in global benchmarking, surpassing the private sector and major European and American utilities in efficiency and reliability. DEWA raised the efficiency of its energy production by using the latest technologies and adopting technological innovations, surpassing European and American utilities, by reducing losses from electricity transmission and distribution networks to 3.3% compared to 6–7% in the US and Europe. DEWA also achieved the lowest customer minutes lost per year (CML) in the world of 2.39 CML compared to 15 minutes in Europe and was also able to reduce water network losses to 6.5% in 2018 compared to 15% in North America, which is one of the best results in the world.