Abu Dhabi Science Festival returns for UAE Innovation Month

The festival will be held on the Abu Dhabi Corniche for one week

Abdullah, 5, takes part in an archaeological dig at the 2014 Abu Dhabi Science Festival on the Abu Dhabi Corniche. Mona Al Marzooqi / The National
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The annual Abu Dhabi Science Festival is making a surprise week-long return this Thursday as part of UAE Innovation Month.

The festival will be held on the Abu Dhabi Corniche alongside Innovator 2018, an annual exhibition and competition open to local inventors of all ages wishing to showcase their unique projects.

Both activities, organised by the Department of Education and Knowledge in partnership with the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs and The Future, will kick-off the first week of the country’s month-long celebration of innovation meant to promote a culture of inventiveness and creative thinking among Emiratis.

“The vision of the leadership is to create a new culture of innovation,” Adek chairman Dr Ali Al Nuaimi said on Monday. “We want innovative institutions, employees, leaders in all sectors. We want to have innovative thinking, creative thinking, away from all that is traditional and conventional. The basis of all of that is education. Education molds the mindset our children early on so that we enable them to have all the skills to innovate, which means that students will get used to always thinking outside the box, to move away from all that is usual and common.”

Abu Dhabi Science Festival will no longer be presented as a standalone event held every November, as it had been since it launched 2011. It will now be offered on a smaller scale — for seven days, instead of 10, and with fewer workshops — each February to coincide with the national innovation month, said Sanad Humaid Ahmed, vice chairman of Adek’s innovation committee.


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"We had been discussing that it would be much better if we do it during the innovation month, so now what we did is we have a science festival, but smaller version for this year, along with the Innovator event," said Mr Ahmed. "During this month we will reinforce our efforts to become one of the 10 top countries in the excellence and innovation index."

Many of the festival’s popular past workshops, such as the operating room surgery, robot inventor, mini mechanics, laser planes and others, will return this week. All activities will be free of charge and participants can register on site.

Both the science festival and Innovator 2018 will be open school pupils from 9am to 1pm. Doors open to the general public from 4pm to 10pm on weekdays and 2pm to 10pm on weekends. All activities will be held at the Abu Dhabi Corniche East Plaza. Additional activities will be offered at three malls in Al Ain: Hili Mall, Bawadi Mall and Al Ain Mall. For more details on Abu Dhabi's events, visit innovator.ae.

Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah will host UAE Innovation Month activities from Feb. 8-14. The third week of events will be held in Sharjah, Ajman and Umm Al Quwain, while the fourth week will be organised by Dubai.

For details of all UAE Innovation Month events, visit uaeinnovates.gov.ae.