Sheikha Shamma bint Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan, President and CEO of UAE Independent Climate Change Accelerators (UICCA), has emphasised that holding the second edition of the Global Media Congress 2023 under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Presidential Court, reflects the UAE’s leading position globally as the capital of the media industry and explores its future in a way that contributes to the progress and development of societies.
In her remarks to the Emirates News Agency (WAM), Sheikha Shamma said, “It is my honour to be speaking with you ahead of the Global Media Congress 2023 (GMC). It is a valuable platform, especially today, as information and journalism hold such crucial roles in our collective progress as a society. It is motivating and encouraging to witness such excellence demonstrated by the congress organisers and participants.”
She added, “The media industry is a fascinating blend of researchers, reporters, editors, and all those we look to for analytical, emotional, and insightful commentary on virtually every aspect of our society.
“We cannot overstate the value of the press in today’s world, a world which is both profoundly collaborative and interconnected.
“We have all seen what has been made possible through globalisation, and at the UAE Independent Climate Change Accelerators, we believe strongly in the collective power and the importance of catalysing holistic change,” she noted.
She also indicated that without the channels, platforms and networks available to us, our ambitions, and abilities to progress together are significantly inhibited. This is where many climate action solutions may lie.
Sheikha Shamma reiterated, “At the UICCA, we acknowledge that climate change is a borderless challenge. Therefore, climate action will require borderless solutions. In acknowledging this, we rely so greatly on the media to inform truthfully, deliver messages authentically, and call us to attention. We admire this global reach which uncovers the truth, holds us accountable, and amplifies the voices of underprivileged communities.
“In the Climate Action field, we are not short of sensationalism or emotion in our work; the urgency and importance of legitimate, verifiable, and quantifiable climate impact, against a backdrop of real climate crises, is never far from our minds,” she added.
“Comprehensive coverage and collaborations with experts and organisations are essential for effective media engagement on sustainability, a broad term that can often be overwhelming – but it does not have to be. To insist upon these qualities, we have launched a ‘Climate Media Majlis’ series. Our effort is to bridge the gap between the press community and subject-matter experts in climate-specific innovation, finance, policy, and start-up tech,” she reaffirmed.
“We want to work together to demystify topics, holistically translate the science to create a passage between language without compromising the true meaning or message.”
Sheikha Shamma emphasised that it is equally crucial for a two-way dialogue regarding knowledge sharing – members of the press must raise their voices and shed light on the areas they want to step into.
Journalists who have already built a track record here in the region must do what is needed to create a path for the next generation of editors and reports so that they feel well-equipped to explore these new and relatively nascent emerging themes. She stated that this year’s edition of the Global Media Congress is particularly significant.
With COP28 to be held in the UAE in November 2023, now more than ever, the media must acknowledge its responsibility in sharing challenges and opinions in maintaining the ethical, transparent, and accountable standards of information gathering and sharing. By shedding light on issues such as climate change, biodiversity loss, and pollution, media can activate change, and inform individuals, communities, and policymakers to act and make informed choices, she said.
“I am thrilled to see the Global Media Congress’ dedication to bringing together these collective voices and look forward to the outcomes of the curated sessions during this year’s edition. I wish you an insightful Congress,” Sheikha Shamma said in conclusion.