Strategic plan proposal
Development and modernization of Abu Dhabi
Among the upcoming nations of the UAE is Abu Dhabi, this plan demonstrates the strategic development and modernization steps the government of Abu Dhabi can take. In this proposal is a brief history of Abu Dhabi, a literature review, methods to be used in the research, the structure or outline of the research, and possible challenges the researcher might face when completing the dissertation paper.
Background information on UAE and Abu Dhabi
United Arab Emirates has developed to become an independent nation with concrete arrangements of government systems that are not subject to external threats. To achieve solid ruling arrangements, the UAE has focused its energies in developing its economic and social sector through the introduction of policies that will contribute to continuous growth and development for the next decades (Stiftung, 2008). The UAE leadership is focused on developing all sectors of the UAE economy, and has come up with key policies that will solidify, improve and expand the efficiency of the emirates economy, efficacy institutions and the overall administration capacity. The government has the required financial resources to achieve the set goals. The UAE takes collective responsibility in promoting and enhancing peace and security at the global scale and has earned respect from its international trade partners. Except Dubai, Abu Dhabi is bigger than other cities in the UAE. Abu Dhabi is the capital and takes around 86% of the land area in UAE. Abu Dhabi hosts the president of UAE, oil companies and federal cabinet and foreign embassies. The government of UAE has focused on a five-year plan that will modernize and develop Abu Dhabi to attain the standards of cities like Dubai. This will translate to strengthening of the social and economic power in the region.
Political stability, economic prosperity, international connectivity, a vibrant culture and efficient infrastructure are indicators that Abu Dhabi is developing to become a global city (Elsheshtawy, 2011, p. 274). These factors are an opening of modernizing and developing the city effectively. Abu Dhabi has advanced in building infrastructure that has enabled it to attain the status of a global city in addition to enjoying economic, political and cultural vibrancy. The city has base oil and petrochemicals whose cost of production is relatively low and has significant reserves of hydrocarbon. Therefore, there are opportunities that contribute to enhancing the value of energy exported, support diversification of economic growth and growth. Abu Dhabi also has close relations with the leading oil producing states and has a strong relationship with the gas sector. The oil, gas and construction industry are the main sources from which the city collects it revenues; it makes about $187 of the economy’s gross domestic product. 23.6% of the economy comes from the financial and commercial activities in the field. Taxis and private vehicles are the main forms of transport in the emirate. The municipality also runs public buses used to transport people within the city, and are particularly used by low-income earners. The city also boats of two airports, Al Ain International Airport and Abu Dhabi International airport.
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The possibility of developing Abu Dhabi is made possible by the different development opportunities available; for example, the availability of vast hydrocarbon reserves makes it possible to promote rapid development and growth. The growth provides development of industry, investment, and opportunities for employment in the region (Abu Dhabi Systems and Information Centre, 2003). Reforms in the education sector have been introduced to enhance high quality and comprehensive systems of education (The Executive Council, 2007, p. 28). The education sector has also introduced programs of early childhood education in public and private partnerships. It has also introduced quality training to teachers who then have skills to equip students with the necessary knowledge and skills required for development. Tourism is also a critical sector in the development of Abu Dhabi. The sector has contributed to economic diversification, new opportunities in the private sector generation, driving urbanization and elevating the international standing of the city (Emirates Identity Authority, 2011, p. 36).
The government has appointed an information committee to enhance administrative, economic and social change in the government. The committee will help meet the demands of populations growing rapidly. With the e-government policy, the vibrant and multicultural community in Abu Dhabi is served effectively, because the policy has responsive and administrative services (The Executive Council, 2007, p. 66). Delivery of services electronically is paramount in Abu Dhabi to enhance convenience and efficiency. The e-government system will provide an opportunity to provide and promote efficiency for technical skills in the public sector (Emirates Identity Authority, 2011, p. 45). The government plans to put in place activities such as birth certificates, death certificates, certification of import and export payments and services to setup business online. The online existence of virtual job market, visa services, online land administration processes and online residency will enhance delivery of services. Accountability and efficiency in government services will also be enhanced by e-government policies.
The Executive Council (2007, p. 14) noted that ZonesCorp, a government body, is responsible for making sure Abu Dhabi is expanded and becomes competitive at the international scale due to strategic infrastructure. To achieve this goal, ZonesCorp is supposed to manage specialized industrial and economic zones and educate both individual and business about economic issues affecting them locally. It should also come up with strategies for creating job opportunities for the educated and skilled population. In addition, it should provide land and services to drive development for developing economic and industrial sectors. The leadership provided will play a significant role in influencing the development of Abu Dhabi. Therefore, the government has formed a close partnership with the economic development council, transport department, Central Bank, municipal affairs department and other entities that play a significant role in establishing organizational and regulatory reforms and improving the business environment with the help of increased transparency and procedures that are streamlined.
Other cities in the EUE have their challenges in economic development, and so does Abu Dhabi and its modernization. Relevant asset clustering strategies that can help achieve economic objectives effectively in Abu Dhabi have not been established. Coordination of various development activities has also not been done effectively. The city has not been able to diversify the sector of energy in order to catapult industrial and growth investment, which will have an impact in employment, despite the fact that it has vast reserves of hydrocarbon. The state is inadequately staffed with human resource capital necessary to support growth adequately (Dawn & Mimouni, 2012, p. 141). The state relies on human capital from other nations for its development. It is crucial for the citizens of Abu Dhabi to be involved in national development; their input is critical. The government needs to introduce reforms in the education sector to facilitate training of citizens to get skills that will meet the standards of the international labor market. Policies for developing human capital needs are not there yet. The relationship between the government and the citizens is also a challenge. The citizens believe that the government should give them rations, instead of them working hard so they can contribute to the proper functioning of the government. The other challenge is that the emirate lacks a well established tourism sector. Tourism promotes growth and development. The top-down system of decision is also a challenge as it lacks accountability and transparency and the rule of law is not functional.
Security and stability in relation to social, cultural and economic development has been possible in Abu Dhabi because of being active in promoting development and modernization. The government however, has a challenge; it lacks comprehensive strategic plans responsible for coordinating various development aspects, involved groups and activities. Providing possible strategies that will help the government to plan and develop is the focus for this thesis proposal.
To identify possible strategies the government can adopt, the research will take a qualitative analysis approach; it will focus on descriptive analysis. The descriptive approach will give systematic procedures the government can take in developing and modernizing Abu Dhabi.
60 participant from various government sectors and relevant sectors such as tourism and small and medium enterprises will be selected randomly (Anand & Ravallion, 1993, p. 134). To request an opportunity to conduct an interview with the relevant persons, the research will send emails to the following ministries: ministry of social and cultural heritage, the ministry of tourism, ministry of finance, the ministry of trade and any other relevant sector. The researcher will also have consultations with domestic and international investors and business partners (Dawn & Mimouni, 2012, p. 142). If it will not be possible to conduct interviews, the researcher will send questionnaires and the instructions that the respondent will follow when responding to the questions in the questionnaire. In each of the sector or ministry involved, the aim of the researcher is to fill three questionnaires or interview three people that are involved in planning strategic development for the ministry. For each ministry or sector, the respondents will be selected through the resource person.
Data collection will focus on both primary and secondary data. Secondary data is information obtained from previous researches on a subject. Scholars collect and analyze data in most researches, therefore, collecting secondary data is simple and does not call for a technical approach for analysis. In this case, secondary data will mainly come from articles and different materials written about Abu Dhabi emirate especially in relation to modernization and development. Plans that are strategically prepared by the government and individuals will contribute significantly in completing the study (The Executive Council, 2007, p. 14).
Primary data is the fresh data collected from the field by a researcher. It contributes significantly in situation analysis because it shows the status quo. The researcher will use qualitative methods of data collection to collect primary data: questionnaires and interviews. The researcher will prepare for interviews or send questionnaires to the ministry of tourism, ministry of finance, ministry of trade and ministry of social and cultural heritage and other relevant key ministries and sectors that are pivotal in providing solutions to the challenges. The researcher will formulate clear research questions in both the interviews and questionnaires to help the respondent answer the questions clearly. The questions formulated will help in generation of valuable data that will address salient issues such as the energy sector, infrastructural development, e-government strategy, development of tourism and social human services (Emirates Identity Authority, 2011, p. 45).
Data will be collected in two weeks. The data collected will be analyzed with relevant data analysis methods and presented in the final stage of strategic planning. Qualitative research methods will be used for data analysis.
Limitations of the study
Main challenges that will be experienced in the study will include time constrains and limited resources. Therefore, the researcher will use a smaller sample of 60 from different sectors and government ministries, as opposed to about 500. This sample would have helped in coming up with a more comprehensive and representative study. Using the sample of 500 would translate to spending more time in the research and using more money. The sample will however, make sure that key ministries that will result to the development and modernization of Abu Dhabi are considered, to get relevant results.
This study will have different sections including introduction, literature survey, methodology, results, and interpretation of study results, recommendation and conclusion. Each of the sections mentioned will be provided with relevant information covering aspects that are crucial in development, modernization and the growth of Abu Dhabi (Shihab, 1996, p. 11).
Abu Dhabi Systems and Information Centre. (2003). SDI and GIT growth in Abu Dhabi. Retrieved from: http://www.iirpresentations.com/A1052/pdf/D1-ABdulkarinAlRaesi.pdf
Anand, S. & Ravallion, M. (1993). Human Development in Poor Countries: On the Role of Private Incomes and Public Services. Journal of Economic Perspectives, vol. 7(1): 133–150.