Destination Dubai: Human Software as a Mobility Service (Part 1 of 2)
In The World is Flat, Tom Friedman writes about how human as well as digital”software” is required to make a society work. This includes: medical care, education, effective legal systems, etc.I am just back from my first trip to Dubai and can affirm that the Emirates, in addition to building the world’s largest buildings and shopping malls, are pioneering another first: transforming human software into a service through importing and maintaing human talent.At roughly 15% -20% of the total population, native born Emiratis might seem scare in the hyper development scene of Dubai. Most of the people I met on this first trip came from someone else, lured by Dubai’s dramatic economic development, career opportunities and tolerant society. For most people in the technology industry, the definition of mobility usually involved cell phones, Wi-Fi, RFID or application access. In Dubai (where the cellphone coverage was excellent and the bandwidth from the hotel, adequate), there are other interesting forms of Mobility.- Capital is pouring into Dubai from all over the Arab and Western world, leading to an avalanche of building cranes working steadily to build apartments and office buildings that are sold out 1-3 years in advance of construction-People are flocking to work and live in the Emirates. The UAE population is expected to grow by 3.3% per annum to reach 4.15 million by 2010. Dubai is expected to have a population of 1.4 million by 2010 (up from roughly 1 million today).-Property ownership is liberalizing and being extended to non-Gulf citizens, allowing them to purchase freehold property in certain areas. By allowing freehold ownership the Dubai government hopes to attract more skilled professionals to stay in the EmirateSo far this model seems to be working. On a visit to a university, I found an American CIO, a Singaporean-raised Indian running the network and an Egyptian woman in charge of application development. They were all interested in driving pervasively wireless connectivity throughout the school The UAE has shown great foresight in transforming their depleting hydrocarbon wealth into a nation built on thriving economic and leisure industries. The open question is will the human software also transplant, creating long-term advantages to the economic development of the gulf nation. No that is mobility.