The 11th Gulf Education Conference Jeddah

This conference done in partnership with The University of Business and Technology, explored the relationship between universities and the fourth industrial revolution with a view to universities shaping it more effectively and preparing society to make the most of it.

Unlike the first industrial revolution, which was driven by steam, the second by electrical power and the third by advances in electronics, automation, and digital technologies, the fourth industrial revolution was much more complex. It was driven by a disruptive fusion of new and existing technologies in physical, digital and biological realms which was having an impact on society globally at an accelerating pace. It was raising opportunities and issues about the nature of work, the use of technologies, economies, governance, values and responsibility as well as the quality of life and its impact on the planet.

Universities played a central role in creating the elements of the revolution and would play a greater role in developing it and enabling society engage with it so as to gain maximum benefit from it.

After a top-level review of how the fourth industrial revolution was developing, how Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries were viewing the revolution and how they were responding to it, the conference unpacked the particular opportunities and challenges which it presented to universities. It did this through the themes of research, teaching and learning, internationalisation, engaging with stakeholders and leading and reforming the university itself.

So, how did this conference help university leaders and those leading aspects of industry, commerce, the professions and government to make a difference?

By providing insights and solutions, the conference equipped attendees with the knowledge and tools needed to effectively shape the fourth industrial revolution and prepare society to make the most of it.

Mr David Lock
Chair of Gulf Conferences
David Lock has had a varied career in international higher education and university leadership. He is currently Education Director of Gulf Conferences, Chair of Gulf Education Conferences and is Secretary General of the Magna Charta Observatory.
Dr. Ashwin Fernandes
Regional Director – Middle East, Africa & South Asia, QS Quacquarelli Symonds CEO, QS IGAUGE Rating
HE Prof. Amr Ezzat Salama
Secretary General of the Association of Arab Universities
He is the Secretary General of the Association of Arab Universities, Chairman of the Executive Bureau of 57357 Foundation (Children Cancer Hospital), and Professor of Structural Engineering at Helwan University in Egypt since 1981.
Dr. Husam Zaman
Former President at Education & Training Evaluation Commission
An inspiring, visionary, and agile leader with over 15 years’ progressive experience in transformational roles in leading education and governmental institutions. He is also currently serving on several boards, supreme national councils, and global advisory committees in the sectors of education, culture and performance measurement.
Dr. Marcel Hattingh
co-founder and CEO of CCI Professional
Dr. Marcel Hattingh is a co-founder and managing partner of CCI Professional – a consulting house that specialises in Industry 4 enabled human capital investment strategies. Additional to this role, he is also a co-founder of The Foundery, an executive member of Arbor Capital, and continues to serve the Doxa Deo group in a leadership capacity since 2000. Before his current roles, Marcel co-pioneered the City Changers Institute (CCI) – a multi-disciplinary higher educational service provider; where he served as the Director.
Dr. Roberta Malee Bassett
Global Lead for Tertiary Education at the World Bank
Roberta Malee Bassett, PhD, is Global Lead for Tertiary Education at the World Bank, where she leads efforts addressing issues such as equity/inclusion; finance, governance, and quality assurance; internationalization; research/innovation/competitiveness; skills and outcomes; and remote delivery/learning. Before joining the Bank, Dr. Bassett worked for many years in both university administration and academia, having served in such roles as lecturer in higher education management and policy at University of Southampton (UK) and Assistant Dean for Continuing Studies and Summer Session at Stanford University (USA). Currently, she is also serving as a guest lecturer in international higher education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Roberta is the author/editor of numerous books and articles in the field of international higher education and holds a Ph.D. from the Center for International Higher Education, Boston College; M.A., Stanford University; and B.A., Columbia University.
Mr. Hicham Shatou
Chief Executive Officer LeQuest
As a child Hicham lived in many different countries where he endured several sports injuries. He experienced first-hand that many challenges in the medical industry were similar across the world. This sparked his interest in the industry at a young age. After receiving his engineering degree at the TU-Delft, he turned his focus towards creating a safer and better healthcare environment for both healthcare professionals and patients. In 2011 this led to him founding LeQuest.
Mr. Amit Gupta
Founder & CEO of NCR Eduservices
Amit, the founder & CEO of NCR Eduservices, before NCR Esuervices worked in the IT industry for a Japanese Bank, during which he was based in India and Japan. NCR Eduservices is a global education delivery company, known for providing educational academic and operations support services to educational institutions. With a repository of 1,50,000+ teachers, NCR Eduservices served 500+ clients in 16 countries. He follows a new approach to education with a stringent focus on the quality of education and a personalized approach for every learner.
Mr. Shadi Awwad
Regional Director. Elsevier’s Research Intelligence group
Shadi Awwad is a Regional Director within Elsevier’s Research Intelligence group, currently leading and managing the Emerging Markets teams in the Middle East, Central & Eastern Europe, Russia and Central Asia. Joining in 2014, Shadi is an established expert and advisor in research strategy, intelligence, management and evaluation, having supported multiple national bodies, international organizations and key academic institutions within these domains.
Ms. Sheila Jagannathan
Head of the Open Learning Campus at the World Bank in Washington DC
Sheila Jagannathan is a lifelong learner and Head of the Open Learning Campus at the World Bank in Washington DC. She serves as the organization’s focal point on digital learning and issues at the intersection of technology use and education in emerging countries. She is an internationally recognized thought leader, advisor, author and a forward-thinking senior education leader with over 35 years of experience in leading capacity building, knowledge management, data, social learning and transformation change across public and private organizations.
Mr. César Wazen
Director of International Affairs Office at Qatar University
Professor Martin Henson
Managing Director
Professor Martin Henson was Dean for International Affairs between 2008 and 2013, leading on International Strategy at the University of Essex. Since 2003 he has acted as a consultant in the area of Higher Education and has specialized in strongly developing higher education sectors – particularly in the GCC.
Mr. Patrick Brothers
Co-Founder & Co-CEO, HolonIQ
Patrick Brothers is the Co-Founder & Co-CEO of HolonIQ, a global market intelligence platform for education. Patrick is a longstanding member of the World Economic Forum and B20 Education and Employment Task Force and is passionate about transforming the way the world learns.
Francisca Harding
CEO, Harding Media
Mr. Jackson Docherty
General Manager Australian Training Products
Jackson Docherty is a practical and pragmatic leader in the learning resource development sector. He takes an innovative approach to learning and assessment and was an early adopter of eLearning, simulations and blended delivery including championing the flipped classroom approach during his career in the Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector. His personal goal as General Manager Australian Training Products is to create and deliver industry-specific educational solutions that resonate with our client base - allowing students to achieve outcomes beyond their expectations and employers to achieve substantial productivity gains.
Dr. Hugh Martin
Chief Learning Officer at Modern Learners and Modern Community Events
Hugh graduated from the University of Oxford with a BA (Hons) and an MA (Hons) in English Language and Literature. This was followed by an MLitt in Creative Writing (with Distinction) from the University of St Andrews. His PhD research is in rhetoric and writing. Hugh has worked in Higher Education senior management for over 20 years, including as the University Secretary at the University of Bedfordshire, the Chief of Staff at the London School of Economics, the Head of Governance at the University of Bristol, and the Executive Officer at the University of St Andrews. His most recent post is Registrar and Chief Administrative Officer at The British University in Dubai.
Ms. Melissa Emler
Chief Learning Officer at Modern Learners and Modern Community Events
Melissa Emler is the Chief Learning Officer at Modern Learners and Modern Community Events. She is a relentless advocate for learning. Known for being a master at designing and delivering online, virtual learning experiences, Melissa has coached over 1500 school leaders in 23 countries to look at school initiatives through the Modern Learners Lens and to make adaptive changes in their school communities using the Immunity to Change framework.
Mr. Chris Lyons
Head of External Engagement, UK ENIC
Chris has been at UK ENIC (formerly UK NARIC) since 2007. As head of engagement since March 2020, his role centres on explaining and promoting UK ENIC’s work; exploring how the national agency and its services may provide appropriate solutions; and listening to needs and challenges faced of members and non-members across the education sector.
Dr. Hynd Bouhia
President & CEO, Strategica
Dr. Hynd has cumulated more than 20 years of experience in Finance and Strategy. She was nominated by Forbes among the 100 most influential women and most influential Arab women in Business (2015), and honored as a member of the Johns Hopkins Society of Scholars (2018).
Dr. Hoda Alkhzaimi
Director of Center of Cyber Security in New York University
Hoda A. Alkhzaimi is currently the Director of Center of Cyber Security in New York University AD and a research assistant professor in New York University. She served in different posts for research and development in the Technology development sector for the past years, she also played a vital role in developing Cyber Security and Cryptology research and development ecosystems. She headed the Department of Research and Development for Cyber Security and Cryptology in different national initiatives in the United Arab Emirates along with her associations to different security initiatives nationally and internationally. She consults for special projects with national and international technology development initiatives.
Mr. Michael Larsen
CEO of Studiosity
As Chief Executive Officer of Studiosity, Mike balances a global growth strategy with the demands of delivering a quality online, on-demand student support service. Regularly researching feedback from student users, education institutions and their evolving learning and teaching needs alike, he has led the Company since 2014.
Ms. Melissa Musgrove
Head of School Engagement, Education Perfect
Melissa started her teaching career in Australia and is keenly committed to supporting students to become strong, independent thinkers and resilient, inquisitive learners. Particularly passionate about Science and STEAM, she looks for opportunities to make links to the world beyond the classroom. Now based in Abu Dhabi, Melissa is EP Head of Engagement (International Schools). She supports schools across Asia, Europe, UK, Africa and the Middle East to provide quality and innovative education to students in a rapidly changing landscape.
Mr. Ndiaye Oumar
CEO of Studymapper
Holder of a master's degree in Digital Marketing and E-business, I am a young entrepreneur passionate about innovation in the education sector and professional integration. After a career as a marketing manager in digital agencies and successful startups, it was in 2019 that I decided to launch the Studymapper, and one year later Studyandwork. I believe that every student should have the same chances of accessing higher education and employment.
Dr. Janice Gobert
CEO of Apprendis, LLC
Janice Gobert, Ph.D. (Cognitive Science, University of Toronto), PI. Gobert is a Learning Scientist with 25+ years' experience, and the lead visionary on Inq-ITS. She is a Professor of Educational Psychology and Learning Sciences at Rutgers Graduate School of Education, and Faculty in the Maker Space Certificate for teachers. She has successfully executed many STEM projects (~25 M).
Mr. Ahmad Obeidat
CEO of Unihance
Ahmad Obeidat is the founder/ CEO of Unihance. With more than 9 years of experience in Data science, AI and R&D and with holding a Nuclear engineering BA degree, Ahmad pursued his career as an AI R&D Lead, principle and a consultant. After that, from Ahmad's experience in self-paced online learning he founded Unihance, an eLearning platform designed to enable fellow students to have clear vision after graduation, and produce enough qualified graduates with skills that served the needs of the emerging knowledge economy, and update them with the latest technologies and technical skills that are used in the current and future market.
Mr. Ewan Prezens
Regional Director, EMEA
Passionate Ed Tech professional, helping educational institutions transform and thrive all across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Proven success with technology initiatives from inception to deployment with local and nation- wide exposure in Higher Education ( Sweden, Norway, Iceland) and K-12 (Malta).
Dr Tahani I. Aldosemani
Senior Consultant at the Saudi Ministry of Education / Debate
Dr Tahani I. Aldosemani is an associate professor of Educational Technology at Prince Sattam bin Abdulaziz University and a former vice dean of Information Technology and Distance Education at the same university. She has a PhD in Educational Technology from the University of Wyoming, USA, and she is a member of multiple educational technology associations such as AECT and ICEM. Dr Tahani was a member of multiple educational national and international professional associations.
Dr. William Lawton
International Higher Education Consultant
Bill has worked in higher education for 30 years. His main interests are in transnational education, mobility, digital learning and government policy. Research projects since 2015 have included comparative quality assessment, student mobility, TNE in Thailand and the Philippines, HE strategy in Pakistan, and a UK branch campus in Egypt. Clients included EAIE, HEFCE, HEA, QS Intelligence Unit, British Council, European Parliament, a Saudi research group, universities in Russia and Canada, and upGrad, an Indian online HE provider.
Dr. Yaping Gao, EDD
Senior Academic Director, Member Services & Partnerships Quality Matters, USA
With a doctoral degree in curriculum and instruction and a concentration on instructional design and educational technology, Dr. Yaping Gao has over 25 years' experience in higher education both in China and in USA as faculty, instructional designer, LMS administrator, and online education administrator. Dr. Gao believes quality course and program design supported by research facilitates effective instruction, promotes student engagement and active learning, and lays the foundation for student success and institutional advancement.
Dr. Jamil Salmi
Global Tertiary Education Expert
Jamil Salmi is a global tertiary education expert providing policy advice and consulting services to governments, universities, professional associations, multilateral banks and bilateral cooperation agencies. Until January 2012, he was the World Bank's tertiary education coordinator. He wrote the first World Bank policy paper on higher education reform in 1994 and was the principal author of the Bank's 2002 Tertiary Education Strategy entitled 'Constructing Knowledge Societies: New Challenges for Tertiary Education'. In the past twenty years, Dr. Salmi has provided advice on tertiary education development, financing reforms and strategic planning to governments and university leaders in about 90 countries all over the world.
Mr. Tim Oates
Director of Assessment Research and Development, Cambridge University Press & Assessment
Tim Oates is Group Director of Assessment Research and Development at Cambridge University Press & Assessment, focusing on national and international research on assessment and measurement. In 2010 he published ‘Could do better’ which laid down the principles for the review of the National Curriculum in England. He was chair of the Expert Panel for Review of the National Curriculum in England. Emerging from this review, subsequent research on the quality and function of textbooks and other resources has been taken up around the world and discussed at two international summits on learning resources.
Mr. Robert Jenkins
Ed.D, Global Director, Education, UNICEF Headquarters
Robert Jenkins, Ed.D, Global Director, Education, UNICEF Headquarters, joined UNICEF in 1995. He brings over 20 years of experience in international development and humanitarian programming in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Prior to his current appointment, Mr. Jenkins served as the UNICEF Representative, Jordan, from 2014-2019, and Deputy Director, Division of Policy and Strategy in UNICEF Headquarters from 2009-2014.
Dr. Abdulla S. Dahlan
Chairman of Board of Trustees at University of Business and Technology
Dr. Abdulla S. Dahlan is a well-known figure in the academic and legal communities, with a distinguished career spanning several decades. He has held numerous leadership positions in academia, business, and government, demonstrating his deep commitment to advancing knowledge and promoting progress in various fields. Currently, Dr. Dahlan serves as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees at the University of Business & Technology (UBT) in Jeddah, KSA, where he provides strategic guidance and direction to the university's administration. He is also a Professor of Law at Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, where he has taught for over 20 years and served as the Dean of the Faculty of Law.
H.E Dr. Ahmed Altheneyan
Deputy Minister for Future Jobs and Digital Entrepreneurship
Dr. Ahmed has a combination of hands on practical work experience and solid educational experience. He has more than 24 years of experience in the Computer Science discipline, 18 years of them are in the Telecom sector. In 2002, Dr. Ahmed has obtained his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Old Dominion University. While working on his Ph.D., he has worked as a Research Assistant at ODU from 1997 to 1998, and at NASA Langley Research Center, from 1998 to 2000 in which he was involved in a wide range of network and distributed computing activities. He joined then Trendium (Telco Solution Provider) from 2001 to 2002 as Senior Member of Engineer working on the design and implementation of OSS platform.
HE. Amal Cheikh Abdallahi
Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research of Mauritius
HE Dr. Imran Al-Qaib
Minister of Education & Scientific Research
HE Dr. Ali Aerjash
Undersecretary Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research
HE Prof. Thafer Y. Assaraira
Chairman of the Higher Education Accreditation and Quality Assurance Commission
Prof. Thafer Assaraira, is a Professor in American Literature since 1998, Ohio University, USA. Currently he is the President of Accreditation and Quality Assurance Commission for Higher Education Institutions and previously was the President of Mu'tah University (2016-2020). He has more than 30 research papers and books published in the fields of English, American, and comparative literature.
H.E Dr. Aawatif Hayar
Minister of Solidarity, Social integration and Family
Pr. Aawatif HAYAR is the Minister of Solidarity, Social Integration and Family in Morocco. She was President of Hassan II University Casablanca 2019-2021. She received the Degree of French “Agrégation” in Electrical Engineering from ENS Cachan in 1992. She received the DEA and Engineer Degrees in Signal processing Image, Telecommunications and Networks from ENSEEIHT Toulouse in 1997. She received with honours the Ph.D. Degree in Signal Processing and Telecommunications from INP Toulouse, 2001. She joined EURECOM from 2001 to 2010 in France.
Dr. Gerry Hanley
Executive Director of MERLOT
Gerry Hanley Ph.D. is the Executive Director of MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching, and SkillsCommons ( which are free and open digital libraries of academic and workforce development teaching, learning, and training resources administered at California State University Long Beach. At CSULB, Gerry is also the Director of the Center for Usability in Design and Accessibility and Professor Emeritus of Psychology; he teaches Human Factors, conducts research, and leads projects for industry, education, and government agencies.
Professor. Dahlia Mahmoud
Associate Professor | Academic Consultant CCI
Dahlia Mahmoud is an associate professor, an international educator with expertise in developing the educational modules for the regional cultural and creative industries sector. An academic with institutional advancement and strategic consulting expertise in research development, outreach through government and stakeholder relations and developing creative professional programs. Her career centers on implementing innovative design strategies and entrepreneurial initiatives. Mahmoud teaches creative approaches to visual communication and storytelling within the MENA and GCC academic structures.
Professor Mohamed Loutfi
President and Vice-Chancellor of the British University in Egypt
Professor Loutfi is currently President and Vice-Chancellor of the British University in Egypt. Prior to this, he held the post of the Vice-Chancellor’s Special Envoy at Coventry University, and served as the inaugural President of the Knowledge Hub, Coventry University’s branch campus in Egypt. Thoughout his career, he held a number of leadership roles as the Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff Metropolitan University and at the University of Sunderland, UK.
HE Dr Khalid Abdul Ghaffar
Acting Minister of Health and Population
Khalid Atef Abdul Ghaffar is a former Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, and the current Minister of Health and Population in Egypt. He is also Acting Minister of Health and Population since October 2021.
Mr. Jeff Maggioncalda
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Event Details
  • Start Date
    23 February 2020 09:00
  • End Date
    24 February 2020 19:00
  • Status