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MBRL has many achievements and milestones on second anniversary


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The Mohammed Bin Rashid Library.

Muhammad Yusuf, Features Writer

The Mohammed Bin Rashid Library (MBRL) is celebrating its second anniversary on June 16; it opened to the public on June 16, 2022. Many achievements have been logged by it and it has achieved many milestones during the period. They have contributed to consolidating its position as a prominent cultural and knowledge hub of the UAE. Since its inauguration, it has attracted nearly 1.5 million visitors of different age groups and nationalities. The library has also witnessed a significant increase in the number of books added to its collection, with more than 225,300 new Arabic books being included, with approximately 54,000 new books being in non-Arabic languages.

It has organised nearly 500 diverse events, including cultural, scientific, arts, and literary commemorations, for different age groups, in both Arabic and English. They included a series of workshops, seminars, literary evenings, and art exhibitions. MBRL welcomed more than 200 high-level official and diplomatic delegations from inside and outside the UAE. The visits were to foster cultural ties and knowledge cooperation between the UAE and other countries and to contribute to the exchange of expertise and knowledge.

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Book stacks at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Library.

The library also signed more than ten Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) and strategic partnerships with educational and cultural institutions, research centres, governmental and private entities and institutions. “A World Reads” initiative was launched in cooperation with local publishing houses, institutions bringing out special publications and writers and authors, to support and enrich school libraries, reading centres, clubs, cafes, and government departments. Since its launch, MBRL has donated over 77,000 books to various institutions and entities.

The library also launched “A World in Your Language” initiative to remove barriers between different cultures and make knowledge resources accessible to visitors of different nationalities. The initiative aims to help readers and researchers read and listen to print and digital books in various fields and specialisations in different languages, using Artificial Intelligence (AI). MBRL attended several local and international forums, meetings and exhibitions. Locally, the library participated in GITEX Global, the International Council on Archives, Abu Dhabi International Book Fair, Sharjah International Book Fair, the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival, and the Arab Media Forum. It also participated in the World Library and Information Congress (IFLA 2023), Bologna Children’s Book Fair 2023, Doha International Book Fair in Qatar, and the International Library and Technology Festival in Turkey.

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The MBRL booth at Arab Media Forum.

Dr. Mohammed Salem AlMazrooei, Board Member at Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Library Foundation, said: “We are proud of our achievements which support our vision and aspirations to become a beacon of culture, knowledge and creativity, and to contribute to building bridges of communication between different cultures, supported by innovation and creativity.” MBRL earlier concluded its participation in the 22nd Arab Media Forum (May 27 – 29) held under the umbrella of the Arab Media Summit, the region’s largest media gathering and part of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives. During the three-day summit, the library showed visitors, including media professionals, journalists, and the public, a glimpse of the Arabic Journalism Exhibition, by presenting rare collectibles and historical periodicals.

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Sheikha Latifa Bint Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum at Arab Media Forum.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Second Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Media Council; Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Sports Council; and Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Culture, visited the library’s platform at the summit. They were briefed on the library’s vision and strategy for promoting culture and knowledge, and were shown historical collectibles. Dr. AlMazrooei said: “Our first participation at the 22nd Arab Media Forum reflects our commitment to cultivating the cultural and knowledge movement locally and internationally. This prominent media gathering is a significant opportunity to introduce media professionals, journalists and all segments of society, to the Mohammed Bin Rashid Library and its upcoming project about Arabic journalism, its history and its influence.”

On the sidelines, the library displayed 14 rare pieces represented by six Arab magazines and eight newspapers, from among some of the oldest printed copies in the history of Arab press. In cooperation with Al Wasl University and in the presence of a group of academics, researchers and officials, the library has also announced the launch of five new editions of scientific theses authored by Emirati researchers, holding PhDs. The theses will be made available in the library and 200 copies of each thesis has been printed by MBRL, with copies allocated to the researchers themselves.

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A view from Arab Media Forum.

Dr. AlMazrooei said that “this initiative aligns with the UAE leadership’s aspirations to achieve a comprehensive development renaissance over the next fifty years.” Dr. Muhammad Ahmed Abdul Rahman, Director of Al Wasl University, said: “The Mohammed Bin Rashid Library is spearheading a cultural enlightenment project that contributes to publishing the works of Emirati researchers, especially young ones. This showcases their impact on knowledge production in the UAE, the region, and across the world.” He noted that 65 per cent of scientific theses were discussed at the university and published in partnership with various entities.

The theses include Innovation in Islamic Project Finance by Haniyeh Ali Mohammad Raisi; The Image of the Other in the Gulf Novel by Rehab Alkilani; Cultural Heritage in Narrative Narration by Hana Al-Ketbi; The Human Characteristics in the Gulf and West Novel — A Comparative Study by Nora Badwawy; and Coherence and Cohesion in Modern Emirati Poetry — A Linguistic-Textual Approach by Moza AlMansory.

 





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