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Thu 30 Oct 2008 01:11 PM

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Microsoft signs deal to aid Gulf gov't officials

Computer giant teams up with Dubai School of Gov't in bid to improve public governance.

A deal has been signed between Microsoft and Dubai School of Government to develop a pioneering technology policy to help officials in the Gulf best serve the public.

The agreement will help drive socio-economic growth in the region, the executive president of the educational institution has said.

Dubai School of Government (DSG), a research and teaching facility focusing on public policy in the Arab world, is the first institution in the region and only the fourth in the world to participate in such a partnership with Microsoft.

Microsoft says the agreement will establish a set of principles and guidelines to provide a base for technology innovation and sustainable growth that will promote improved governance in the public sector.

“We see an opportunity to work together with content and best practice on the role of information technology and government,” said Pamela Passman, global vice president, corporate affairs, Microsoft Corporation.

“This covers how you use technology effectively, what that means for changing the way you do government and also the public policy framework that’s needed in Dubai and across the region.”

The memorandum of understanding will allow DSG and Microsoft Gulf, the regional arm of the computer technology corporation, to work together over a three-year period on capacity building around technology policies and public administration.

It includes creating academic workshops for students and collaborating on curricula for DSG’s master of public administration (MPA) degree programme.

“There’s a wonderful opportunity for us to collaborate on what is the right legislative policy regulatory framework to help spur the innovative capacity that is such an important part of the 2015 vision for Dubai,” continued Passman.

Nabil Ali Alyousuf, executive president and vice chair of the board of trustees of the Dubai School of Government, said: “The aim of the partnership is to make it easier for regional governments to exchange knowledge, best practices and experience about effective government policies, programmes and solutions that will drive socio-economic growth in the region.”

In addition, he said the regulatory framework would educate the next generation of leaders in the Arab world by equipping them with the skills they needed to address challenges of the future.

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