DUBAI, 14 January 2022 – Sustainable tourism, contactless flying, digital connectivity strategies and Expo-backed innovators transforming lives have all been headline themes across Travel and Connectivity Week, Expo 2020 Dubai’s latest Theme Week, which wraps up this coming Saturday (15 January).
From Sunday (9 January), the Theme Week – the latest in a series of 10 throughout Expo’s 182-day run – has convened leading industry figures, innovators and policymakers around digitalisation and connectivity as a universal human right and force for good in a changed world.
National connectivity strategies defined conversations on its opening day (Sunday), featuring the likes of Marushka Chocobar Reyes, Secretary of Government and Digital Transformation of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, Peru, and His Excellency Marc Hansen, Minister Delegate of Digitalisation, Luxembourg – the latter speaking on the European country’s collaborative strategy and national action plan for digital inclusion.
The week also featured Expo-backed innovators such as Jangala, which is transforming connectivity across challenging emergency and development situations such as refugee camps, and Peru’s Laboratoria, which economically empowers women across Latin America.
And the Spain Pavilion hosted companies and institutions from Spain and the UAE, discussing intelligent solutions for sustainable mobility infrastructure in a preview of the Global Mobility Call – the first world-class sustainable mobility event, taking place in Madrid from June 14-16.
Closing the digital divide then underpinned discussions at the Women’s Pavilion on Monday (10 January), featuring representatives from Expo Partners Accenture and UPS. ‘World Majlis – Digital Twins and New Realities: Living and Thriving with New Realities’ followed at the UK Pavilion on Tuesday, touching on digitised services, artificial intelligence (AI), and the capabilities of digital twin technology.
The Travel and Connectivity Business Forum on Tuesday (11 January), held under the Programme for People and Planet, explored the future of sustainable tourism, featuring representatives from Portugal, the Seychelles and Bhutan, among others, with Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde GebreMariam noting the digitalisation of global airlines in light of pandemic-related demands for contactless travel.
Other highlights across the Theme Week included the crowning of Swiss start-up Exomotion as the winner of the Future Mobility Hack, held in conjunction with Siemens at Expo 2020 from 9-13 January.
Targeting increased mobility and access in cities for people with determination, Exomotion will receive a MindSphere package for one year, enabling it to work further on its solution. Siemens, Expo 2020’s official infrastructure digitalisation partner, will also facilitate several networking opportunities within and beyond Siemens, where the winner will be able to present both the start-up and an Internet of Things (IoT) solution in front of different, valuable audiences.
Travel and Connectivity Week ends on Saturday (15 January) with ‘Cultures in Conservation | A Cloud is Nobody’s’ from 1500 GST at the DP World Pavilion – gathering artists and AI experts alike to discuss how data activism can spur social change, spawning people- and community-centric outcomes that chip away at systemic injustice.
Expo 2020’s 10 Theme Weeks are a core pillar of the World Expo’s Programme for People and Planet, which offers an exchange of inspiring new perspectives to address the greatest challenges and opportunities of our time.