Does your university as a body initiate and participate in cross-sectoral dialogue about the SDGs, e.g. conferences involving government/NGOs?

August 25th, 2016: Canadian University Dubai (CUD) has signed a landmark partnership agreement with leading US university Georgia Tech, which will see the creation of the region’s first research lab focusing on the development of the Physical Internet.

The new collaboration will bring together high-level researchers from the UAE and the international community to help establish the cutting-edge systems and technologies that will support the development of the Physical Internet.

The research will be focussed on hyper-connected logistics and supply chain design, modelling, simulation, management, sustainability, and mass customization, leading to a transformation in the way global supply chains function. The first step will be the creation of a specialized Hyper-connected Healthcare Lab, hosted by CUD.

The Physical Internet initiative is gathering global interest as it becomes evident that the way physical objects are currently supplied and transported around the world is unsustainable, both economically and environmentally. The system provides a universal logistics model based on the interconnection of networks through a standardized set of protocols and interfaces.

Ranked among the top ten public universities in the US, Georgia Tech is renowned as a leader in developing revolutionary technologies, and the collaboration with CUD will build upon its existing network of research labs in other global logistics hubs, including Singapore, Panama and the Netherlands.

The partnership was initiated at the International Conference on Leadership, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, hosted by CUD, where Professor Benoit Montreuil, leader of the International Physical Internet Initiative, delivered a keynote address. The agreement comes as CUD announces the forthcoming launch of both undergraduate and graduate programs in supply chain management.

Speaking about the new lab, Professor Montreuil said, “We are very pleased to be embarking upon this endeavor with CUD to establish the first Physical Internet research initiative in the Middle East. Our aim is to draw upon the context of Dubai and in doing so, target key sectors such as healthcare. A hyper-connected healthcare system within Dubai could act as a hub for labs across the entire region.”

Heading up the initiative on behalf of CUD is graduate studies director, Dr. Marc Poulin, who said, “As an important logistics hub and a supporter of bold and visionary initiatives, we believe that Dubai is the ideal location to establish this lab. We are delighted that Georgia Tech has chosen to partner with CUD in this initiative and look forward to contributing to both academia and industry, by developing world-class research and bringing forward innovative methods in the management of logistics.”

October 23rd, 2014: Dr. Nnamdi Madichie, a professor of business at The Graduate School, Canadian University Dubai, has contributed to the international debate on the future of research into ‘investment for development’ at the United Nations World Investment Forum 2014.

Dr. Madichie was among a multidisciplinary team of academics – including professors from Oxford University, the National University of Singapore, University of Bern, The Graduate Institute (Geneva) and New York University – who were invited to take part in a round table discussion to help shape a policy-orientated research agenda on investment for sustainability, for the next 15 years and beyond.

Organized by the Unites Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the World Investment Forum is a platform for international leaders and stakeholders to debate and promote investment flows that contribute to sustainable and inclusive development across the globe. The biennial event brings together heads of state, global CEOs, academic experts, and leaders of international organizations and civil society groups from 150 countries.

As a member of the Academy of International Business and the Editor in Chief of the African Journal of Business & Economic Research, Dr. Madichie was invited to participate in the round table based on his expertise and research in higher education policies across emerging markets. Discussions focussed upon how policy plays a vital role in ensuring that corporate investment is beneficial to the territories, communities and individuals it is directed towards.

Dr. Madichie said, “The forum was an extremely valuable opportunity to come together, not only with academics, but with policy-makers and industry representatives to discuss how we can embrace a trilateral network in supporting sustainable development strategies.

“I have conducted extensive research in the area - from the business of higher education to the development of women’s entrepreneurship, especially in the context of emerging markets, including Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East – and it was pleasing to be able to draw upon this to contribute to the discussions.”

Dr. Madichie’s session culminated in the launch of the Business Schools for Impact, a UNCTAD initiative that aims to support business schools to contribute to sustainable development in the poorest areas of the world, by teaching the skills required to invest and operate in low-income environments with positive social impact.

The four-day event, which is widely regarded as the most important gathering of stakeholders in the international investment community, also tackled the issue of investment in women’s empowerment and gender equality, another of Dr. Madichie’s research interests.

Dr. Madichie revealed, “With dignitaries such as Dr. Mukhisa Kituyi, Secretary General, UNCTAD; and Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director, UNWOMEN, this was a memorable session for me. I was pleased to have Ms Mlambo-Ngcuka respond to my question on the role of higher education in sustainable development and to acknowledge the importance of a policy agenda in that direction.”

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November 22nd, 2015: Canadian University Dubai (CUD) and global professional services firm, KPMG, have come together to collaborate on new educational, training and research initiatives as part of a recent Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) established between the two organizations.

The MOU aims to further bridge the gap between academia and the local business community by facilitating the joint development and delivery of education and training services for professional learners, as well as supporting collaborative research initiatives that are relevant to the regional business environment.

The new collaboration was sealed with the signing of MOU by Ms. Tasneem Lakdawalla, Partner, KPMG Lower Gulf Limited, and Dr. Karim Chelli, President of Canadian University Dubai. Also in attendance at the signing ceremony were Ms. Judit Karfner, Associate Director, KPMG, and senior faculty and staff members from CUD.

As part of the MoU, the two organizations are also set to explore the creation of a KPMG Academy within the University, to provide a platform for the development of a comprehensive catalogue of professional training solutions.

The MOU will help to inform and enhance CUD’s current corporate training portfolio, which provides standard and tailor-made programs across a wide range of professional disciplines, for business and government sector clients in the UAE and beyond. For KPMG, the new collaboration will help to provide the academic framework and infrastructure to reinforce its continual professional education agenda.

Speaking on behalf of KPMG, Ms. Lakdawalla said that the collaboration would draw upon the expertise of the two organizations to bring out mutual benefit for the business and academic communities.

On behalf of CUD, Dr. Chelli commented, “We are privileged to be embarking upon this collaboration, which will impact learners at every level throughout the University. The applied knowledge and practical experience that KPMG brings to the collaboration will help us to provide a holistic learning experience and further harmonize our curriculum with the needs of the business world.”

April 20th, 2015: As Dubai's urbanized area is set to double in the next five years, incorporating sustainability factors in buildings and infrastructure will become a necessity, not a luxury, according to Dubai Municipality's Assistant Director of Planning and Engineering, Mr. Abdullah Mohammed Rafi.

Speaking during the opening ceremony of the inaugural Sustainability Day hosted by Canadian University Dubai (CUD) Mr. Rafi said that the application of building information modeling technology and the implementation of green building regulations are among the measures that will support the sustainable development of the built environment in the run up to 2020.

The Sustainability Day was organized by the University in collaboration with the Environmental Center for Arab Towns (ECAT) in the context of Dubai's vision for a sustainable, smart city by 2021. The opening ceremony also heard from Mr. Hussain AlFardan, Director of ECAT, Dr. Karim Chelli, President of CUD, and Dr. Hoshiar Nooraddin, Assistant Professor and Conference organizer and Chair.

The unique event brought a wide range of stakeholders - Government, business, education, as well as high school and university students - to one platform, to debate the sustainability agenda, with particular reference to the challenges in Dubai and the UAE.

The event heard from keynote speakers from the public, private and NGO sectors on subjects ranging from food security and water stress, to the roles of various organizations in driving forward sustainability measures. Alongside the conference was a Sustainability Exhibition, which saw organizations from the transport, energy, agriculture, retail, NGO and Government sectors showcase their own contributions to sustainable development.

The event also put the future custodians of the environment centre-stage in a high school speaking competition that saw teams from nine schools from Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi provide their own insights into the challenges for a sustainable future.

Recycling, sustainable economic development, and the preservation of natural resources were among the topics debated, with Millennium School Dubai student Disha Bobby taking the winner's trophy and AED 7,000 prize money. Haseeb Khan and Fatima Mamzi, both of Sharjah American International School, took second and third place respectively.

Speaking on behalf of CUD, Dr. Karim Chelli, said, "Through our academic programs, particularly in the School of Environment and Health Sciences, we are playing a part in preparing students to contribute to a sustainable future. We also aim to practice what we preach, and this event further reinforces our commitment to supporting the sustainability aims of Dubai."

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December 15th, 2014: The Canadian University Dubai Centre of Excellence for Innovation and Creativity (CEIC) and the Environmental Center for Arab Towns (ECAT) have joined together to work on a range of collaborative initiatives that will promote environmental awareness and sustainability, including the creation of a Green Universities Council.


The partnership was formalized with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by Mr. Hussain Abdulla Al Fardan, Director of ECAT, and Dr. Karim Chelli, President of Canadian University Dubai and CEO of Dubai Education LLC, of which the Centre of Excellence is a subsidiary.


The agreement will see the two organizations collaborate on regional activities to promote sustainable actions and to educate students and the wider community on the importance and benefits of going green. The partners will also work across the higher education sector through the new Council to encourage practical steps towards environmental development.


Operating under the umbrella of Dubai Municipality and with affiliations to the Arab Town Organization, ECAT is well established in providing technical expertise in environmental health, natural resources and urban sustainable development. Combined with CEIC's mission to harness innovation and creativity, this new partnership is expected to deliver some novel approaches to sustainable development promotion and education.


Speaking at the MoU signing ceremony, Mr. Hussain Abdulla Al Fardan recognized CUD's leading role in sustainability among higher education institutions and commended the University for driving the environmental agenda. The University's environmental credentials have previously been recognized with a Conservation Awards from Dubai Electricity and Water Authority.


Speaking on behalf of Dubai Education LLC, Dr. Karim Chelli said that the alliance was a natural union of two organizations that had a long tradition of collaboration.


"We have worked with Dubai Municipality since the inception of CUD and this agreement cements our partnership and establishes a hub for researchers, scholars and students to create and innovate, and to work together towards a sustainable and diversified economy through green development."

The signing ceremony event, which was introduced by Dr. Kiran Tangri, Director of the Centre of Excellence, also heard from Dr. Hoshiar Nooradin from CUD's School of Architecture and Interior Design about the development and future of the partnership.

This agreement is among a number of initiatives that the Centre of Excellence is progressing in support of the UAE's strategic goals for environmental sustainability and development, including the recent International Conference on Web and Open Access to Learning, which included a workshop dedicated to the Dubai 2020 Smart City vision.

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