Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government organised an Innovation and Governance study trip to Berlin
The Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government (MBRSG) has organised an Innovation and Governance study trip to Berlin, Germany, from 5 to 10 March 2023, where participants were students in MBRSG’s Master of Innovation Management (MIM) programme.
Supervised by Dr. Melodena Stephens, Professor of Innovation Management at MBRSG, the study trip sought to introduce participants to Germany’s innovation and governance systems.
“The Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government is committed to its mission to train and empower the government leaders of tomorrow,” said Prof. Raed Awamleh, Dean of MBRSG. “We strive to complement and reinforce the outstanding classroom teaching we offer our students with field trips that allow them to explore, first-hand, how innovation and governance are implemented in the real world. Germany has always been a pioneer in innovation and Fourth-Industrial-Revolution technologies and German institutions have tremendous insight and expertise to offer our students.”
Following a visit to the Berlin Wall and Brandenburg Gate ahead of the trip’s activities, the trip officially kicked off on 6 March, with participants visiting the UAE embassy to meet with H.E. Ahmed Alattar, UAE Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, and Mr. Harald Bos, Managing Partner of M&H Advisory & Investments, who gave an overview on UAE-Germany relations and the role that innovation plays in trade and cooperation. Day one concluded with a meeting with Mr. Bendix Lippe, former political communicator for the Deutscher Bundestag, along with a tour of the Bundestag itself and the Dome at the Reichstag.
Day two saw participants visit the Porsche Factory to experience Fourth-Industrial-Revolution technologies in German manufacturing – particularly, the automobile industry, one of Germany’s leading sectors. The group was then treated to a personalised visit around the city of Leipzig, including the first stock exchange there, the market, and the cathedral where renowned German composer Johann Sebastian Bach is buried.
The trip continued with its third day, with a visit to ICN Business School – a Grande Ecole of management, triple-accredited AACSB, EQUIS, and AMBA – for a training session with Lego Serious Play, facilitated by Prof. Stephan Sonnenburg, expert in Creativity and Serious Play. Next on the agenda was a talk from Carsten Vossel, Owner and MD of CCVOSSEL GnBH, about the evolving nature of cybersecurity, followed by a visit to Potsdam – a city on the border of Berlin – to see Sanssouci Palace and its fountain, an innovation that took 100 years to build.
Day four began with a meeting at German Trade & Invest (GTAI) with Ms. Asha-Maria Sharma, Deputy Director of Digital & Service Industries, where she discussed, among various topics, Germany’s pioneering role as the first country to push the Fourth Industrial Revolution. This was followed by a “Research Dialogue and Tea” at the Max Planck Centre of Human and Machines, which plays a leading role in driving innovation in Germany, where the group met the entire team lead by the Director, Iyan Rahwan. The day concluded with visits to Checkpoint Charlie and the Mauer Museum.
The trip wrapped up on 10 March with a visit to BCG Brighthouse – global creative consultancy and the pioneers of “Purpose consulting” – in order to understand the role of purpose in an organisation. This was followed by a talk by Prof. Melodena Stephens on AI Decision Making, which was based on her forthcoming book on the subject.
“Hands-on learning offers a great advantage to students in any field, and particularly those focusing on innovation and governance,” said Prof. Melodena Stephens. “Trips of this kind allow students at the Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government to gain experience from pioneers in these fields, explore international best practices in governance, understand the subject from the point of view of both innovators and policymakers, and study real-life applications of innovation that are truly making a difference.”