The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation (MBRF) continued organizing knowledge activities during the third and fourth days of the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair (ADIBF) 2023. The MBRF held activities on the third and fourth days of the event that fall under the banner of its leading knowledge programs and initiatives, such as the ‘Knowledge Lounge,’ the Dubai International Program for Writing (DIPW), and ‘KnowTalks.’

Dr. Jamal Muqableh, Professor of Modern Literature and Criticism, Department of Arabic Language, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, participated in a workshop on novel critical thinking on the third day of ADIBF as part of the ‘Knowledge Lounge’ activities. Muqableh discussed how to read the novel and writing techniques, as well as the short-listed novels for the coveted International Prize for Arabic Fiction (IPAF). Furthermore, the MBRF organized a debate session mediated by Rula Al-Banna featuring Turkish translator Mehmet Hakkı Suçin as part of the ‘Knowledge Lounge.’ Numerous Turkish and Arab poets took part in the session, which shed light on the axes of translation from Arabic into Turkish and Arabic and Turkish literature, as well as the translation of poetry and the balance between form and content in translating poetry. Additionally, they discussed the most significant challenges facing translators when translating poetry in particular and literature in general.

The MBRF’s pavilion hosted several high-level visitors, including Dr. Ghassan Abbas, Ambassador of the Syrian Arab Republic to the UAE, during which he toured the Digital Knowledge Hub. A delegation from the Abu Dhabi Police Knowledge Centre also visited the pavilion and learned about the MBRF’s activities and initiatives. His Excellency Zaki Anwar Nusseibeh, Cultural Adviser to the President of the UAE and the Chancellor of UAE University, also paid a visit to the MBRF pavilion and viewed the publications of DIPW.

As part of DIPW’s activities, the MBRF organized a signing ceremony for the publications of the translation workshops, including the signing of ‘The Early Days in the UAE’ by Nick Cochrane-Dyet, which was translated by Maryam Al Yammahi, and ‘A Unique Treasure in the Mingana Collection at the University of Birmingham’ by Kholoud Al-Khatib.

Moreover, Fatima Al Ameri’s book ‘Drawing Children’s Stories’ was launched during a workshop, in which she highlighted that the silent book is devoid of language and focuses on pictures to sharpen the children’s imagination and enhance their creativity. She emphasized that DIPW establishes the proper foundation for creative writing and stressed that achieving high professionalism is the writer’s responsibility and necessitates relentless efforts. According to Al Ameri, becoming a professional book illustrator necessitates developing a distinct style, understanding the intended audience, and participating in shows alongside other illustrators.

The third day also witnessed the signing ceremony for Safaa Taymur’s book, ‘My eyes hear you,’ and the outputs of the Children’s Science Fiction Workshop. In addition, the MBRF organized a panel session as part of the ‘KnowTalks’ with Yazen Al Kodmani, Partner of 3Y AgTech and Operations Manager of the Emirates Bio Farm. During the discussion, Al Kodmani discussed the challenges faced to ensure food security, the role of new and creative technologies in this regard, and the significance of exchanging ideas on technology, research, and development initiatives to shape the future of the agricultural sector.

On the fourth day, the MBRF organized a workshop titled ‘Recovery by Writing’ with Aida Mahjoub in collaboration with the Writing Room, which falls under the aegis of the ‘Knowledge Lounge.’ In addition to a session with Jumana Khaled on children’s readings of the story ‘The Diary of the Three Brothers - Azzouz Al Fattak,’ Dr. Parween Habib was interviewed by Sayed Mahmoud on biography writing in the book ‘Women in the Life of Taha Hussein.’ Furthermore, the MBRF held a session with Jérôme Viricel, General Manager of RECAPP - Veolia Middle East, as part of its ‘KnowTalks’ series. This session focused on the latest innovations in recycling, new types of materials being recycled, and the role of consumers, laws, and legislation in fostering sustainable behaviors. In light of the increasing awareness on the importance of the circular economy, the session shed light on numerous topics, including the adoption of 22 new regulations aimed at speeding the transition to a circular economy by the UAE Circular Economy Council in July 2022. Studies reveal that 69 percent of the population realizes the necessity of modifying lifestyles and living in a more economically responsible manner, and they further believe in the potential of transitioning to a circular economy by establishing and fostering a system that converts waste into resources.

The 32nd edition of ADIBF fortifies its position as one of the leading international book fairs in the Middle East, providing a platform to enhance knowledge and culture and stimulate reading and writing, along with strengthening the UAE’s position as an incubator for creativity and knowledge excellence. MBRF’s projects and activities during this event are part of a wide range of events that are held on the sidelines of the fair and span a wide spectrum of knowledge content while also providing bridges for cultural, intellectual, and literary communication.