Event Details

The immersive world of the metaverse allows for major shifts in training, education, work and customer experience. We will explore how metaverse innovations, tools and technologies can enhance business processes and provide new channels of digital commerce.

Our keynote session will be an on-stage interview with Her Excellency Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri, the UAE Minister of State for Public Education and Advanced Technology and Chairwoman of the UAE Space Agency.

The Regional Strategic Forecast will this year be delivered by Ana Nichols, the Economist Intelligence Unit's Director of Industry Analysis, who will be visiting from London.

We will also enjoy a panel discussion from leaders of organisations at the cutting edge of the next tech revolution in artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality.


8.30am Arrival, Breakfast and Networking

9.15am Welcome and Introduction

9.20am Regional Strategic Forecast with Ana Nichols, Industry Director, The EIU

10.00am Panel Discussion (including Paulo Hamilton, Memac Ogilvy; Bashar Kilani, Accenture)

10.40am Coffee Break and Networking

11.00am Keynote "Fireside Chat" with Her Excellency Sarah Bint Yousif Al Amiri, Minister of State for Public Education and Advanced Technology

11.40am Thanks and Closing Remarks

11.45am End and Networking

Please note that this event is limited to senior-level executives and per invitation only. If you are not an existing member of The Economist Intelligence Corporate Network, but would like to learn how you can attend our events, please contact us.



  • Robert Willock (Director MENA & Regional General Manager of The Economist Intelligence Corporate Network)

    Robert Willock

    Director MENA & Regional General Manager of The Economist Intelligence Corporate Network

    Robert is the Director of the Economist Corporate Network based in Dubai and covering the MENA region. Robert works closely with network members to help inform their business strategies through political, economic and operational insight and to connect them with their senior leadership peers.

    Robert is a business journalist, editor and publisher with 25 years of experience covering a wide variety of sectors, including hospitality, retail, construction, energy and transport, and a particular interest in human capital management.

    He is an accomplished event chairman, moderator and speaker.

    Robert completed an MBA at the University of Leicester School of Business in 2012 and holds a Bachelor's degree from the University of Nottingham.

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  • Her Excellency Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri (Minister of State for Public Education and Advanced Technology)

    Her Excellency Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri

    Minister of State for Public Education and Advanced Technology

    Her Excellency Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri is the UAE Minister of State for Public Education and Advanced Technology and Chairwoman of the UAE Space Agency.

    In her role as Minister of State for Public Education and Advanced Technology, her Excellency spearheads the UAE Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology’s efforts to empower the adoption of Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies and promote research and development in the advanced science and technology sector, in order to create new industries that drive the shift towards a knowledge economy. This, in turn, contributes to the overall mandate of the Ministry to strengthen the UAE’s industrial base, ensure in-country value, and raise the competitiveness of local industries.

    As Chairwoman of the Space Agency, Her Excellency is responsible to oversee the Agency’s mandate of guiding the space sector, ensuring its contribution to the national economy and to the UAE’s sustainable development.

    Her Excellency is also the Chairwoman of the Emirates Scientists Council, Chairwoman of the Fourth Industrial Revolution Council, Chairwoman of the Dubai Future Academy Board of Trustees, and she previously served as the Deputy Project Manager and Science Lead of the Emirates Mars Mission (Hope) at the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) before going on to be appointed Chairwoman of the UAE Space Agency.

    Previously, Her Excellency was the Head of R&D at MBRSC, where she established the Centre’s knowledge management, strategic research and product assurance functionalities. She was also involved in DubaiSat-1 and DubaiSat-2, and in the establishment of the KhalifaSat program.

    In 2014, Her Excellency was tasked with and led the establishment of the Advanced Aerial Systems Program, where she championed development efforts on a prototype High Altitude Pseudo-Satellite. The project resulted in a successful 24-hour flight of the unmanned vehicle, which recorded the highest altitude of any aircraft over UAE airspace.

    In 2015, the World Economic Forum honoured Her Excellency as one of its 50 Young Scientists for her contributions to science, technology and engineering.

    H.E. Sarah Al Amiri holds a Bachelor's and a Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from the American University of Sharjah..

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  • Ana Nicholls (Director, Industry Operations of The Economist Intelligence Unit)

    Ana Nicholls

    Director, Industry Operations of The Economist Intelligence Unit

    Ana oversees The Economist Intelligence Unit’s industry subscription services in London, managing websites, reports, data and forecasts across six industry sectors and acting as lead analyst for our healthcare and automotive analysis. Ana also works closely with clients in those two sectors, particularly on projects related to value-based health and healthcare policymaking.

    Ana is an experienced analyst who has previously spent time specialising in global economic and business development as well as analysis of healthcare policy. She has a particular interest in the transition countries of Eastern Europe.

    Ana holds a Master’s degree in English from Cambridge University.

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  • Paul Hamilton (Managing Director MENA of Memac Ogilvy)

    Paul Hamilton

    Managing Director MENA of Memac Ogilvy

    Paul leads the work of Ogilvy Consulting and Reality – a studio by Ogilvy (all things XR / metaverse) in MENA and has been designing, building and leading strategic innovation globally for over 30 years.​ After living and working in the Americas, Europe and Asia, he has called the UAE home for nearly a decade.

    Paul’s work remixes Ogilvy’s borderless creativity with strategy, digital and innovation insight using design led approaches for real world business and societal impact. He has created over 100 virtual worlds on a variety of platforms for both small and large (10,000+ guests) events.

    With an MBA from INSEAD and BSc in Computer Science & Psychology, he’s eternally curious, fascinated by the mix of digital and human.

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  • Bashar Kilani (Managing Director of Accenture Middle East B.V.)

    Bashar Kilani

    Managing Director of Accenture Middle East B.V.

    Bashar is Managing Director at Accenture based in Dubai and a member of the Growth Markets leadership team focusing on Digital Economy market making trends that accelerate growth, transform operations, and enable organizations to build their digital core.

    A seasoned Corporate Executive (Accenture & IBM) & Advisory Board Member with a track record of leadership positions in sales & marketing, business consulting, engaging new markets and driving operational excellence. His international career spans the USA, Europe
    and the Middle East.

    Bashar attended many Executive Development programs (HBS, IMD, INSEAD) and holds an MBA in Management (Henley Business School), an M.Sc. in Computer Engineering (University of Surrey) and B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering (University of Jordan). On a personal note, Bashar is married and a father of two. He loves traveling, reading on history & culture and tries to walk at least 10,000 steps a day.

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  • Anthony Butler (Chief Technology Officer at IBM)

    Anthony Butler

    Chief Technology Officer at IBM

    Anthony is the leader and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for IBM’s blockchain business in Middle East and Africa. He is responsible for leading engagements with clients across the region and helping them to leverage distributed ledger technologies to transform their organisations, ecosystems and industries. He was previously the CTO for IBM Cloud in Middle East and Africa providing technical leadership across cloud, blockchain, and cognitive portfolios; and helping clients understand how emerging technologies can be used to unlock new forms of value. Prior to this, he held multiple global roles, including leading the global transformation of one of IBM’s largest natural resources sector clients, consulting to a global payments provider on new forms of digital payment, and developing a set of services offerings around mobile payments. He is a member of IBM’s Academy of Technology, chair of MEA’s patent development board, and was appointed as a Distinguished Engineer in recognition of sustained technical leadership across the IBM company and his contribution to blockchain and cloud technologies. He holds multiple patents in the fields of blockchain, mobile payments, artificial intelligence, and security; and holds a Masters of Engineering from Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology with a thesis in scheduling in distributed systems.

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