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Coursera Report Shows Surge In UAE Interest In AI Upskilling

The Emirates lead the Middle East and North Africa for skill proficiency and come second globally for business.

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coursera report shows surge in uae interest in ai upskilling

Applications for generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) courses in the UAE have rocketed by over 1,100% during the past year, according to Coursera’s Global Skills Report 2024.

The enrolment rate easily surpassed the MENA region’s already impressive 861% year-on-year growth and the worldwide rate of 1,060%, signifying an increase in interest from UAE learners in AI and machine learning skill sets.

“Compared to other markets, the UAE has a higher number of expats, so the workforce structure may be more inclined to adopt technology-related or technology-impacted roles,” said Nikolaz Foucaud, Coursera’s managing director for Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

According to Coursera, the Emirates is now a leader in AI education, ranking third globally in the GenAI sector behind the USA and China. During the first quarter of 2024, over 1 million UAE users were active on the platform, with a median age of 35.

The MENA region is set to become a key player in digital transformation and trade, according to the report, as significant investments continue to be made in technology infrastructure and logistics. However, there is still a pressing need to boost technology skills proficiency, which currently sits at around 40%.

Also Read: The Most AI-Proof Career Opportunities In The Middle East

“When you speak to employers, they emphasize skills that AI disruption cannot easily replace or enhance in the short term – social skills, human skills, interpersonal skills, the ability to collaborate, lead teams, and communicate effectively, including public speaking,” Coursera’s Foucaud added.

Coursera’s report also highlights the importance of career-focused, accessible skill development, along with initiatives to further gender inclusivity in the online learning sector. Women in the UAE currently comprise 33% of Coursera learners, with 27% studying science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) subjects.

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Initial Trials Of Dubai’s Driverless Evocargo Trucks Completed

Testing was announced on July 17, and the completion is a major milestone towards upgrading the region’s logistics infrastructure.

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initial trials of dubai's driverless evocargo trucks completed
Dubai Media Office

A Dubai-based company has completed the initial trials for the UAE’s first driverless trucks. The groundbreaking achievement by Evocargo, partnering with Dubai South, took place at Dubai South Logistics District, and marked a significant step towards incorporating autonomous technologies into the region’s wider logistics infrastructure.

Announced on Wednesday, July 17th, the trials featured the Evocargo N1 unmanned electric truck navigating a predetermined route within a controlled setting. The test involved interactions with common road obstacles such as cars, trucks, and pedestrians, aiming to evaluate the vehicle’s hardware and software reliability, accident prevention systems, and overall readiness for public road use.

Officials were keen to highlight that this accomplishment aligns with the UAE’s ambitious strategy to position itself as a global leader in innovation and technology adoption. The country aims to have 25% of all transportation in Dubai autonomous by 2030, underscoring its commitment to revolutionizing the logistics sector using advanced technologies.

Mohsen Ahmad, CEO of the Logistics District at Dubai South, emphasized the importance of the collaboration with Evocargo in enhancing the region’s logistics capabilities. He noted that autonomous vehicles are set to increase efficiency, reduce carbon emissions, and establish a sustainable logistics infrastructure that will benefit both Dubai and the wider UAE.

Also Read: Riyadh Developers Reveal New 45,000-Seat Murabba Stadium

Ahmed Al-Ansi, CEO of Evocargo Autonomous Logistic Services, also expressed optimism that the trials will draw new customers and investments across the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries. The partnership aims to lead in innovative tech solutions, further establishing the UAE as a pioneer in autonomous transportation.

The successful completion of the trials marks a crucial step towards realizing the UAE’s vision for a technologically advanced and sustainable future in which autonomous vehicles are expected to play a pivotal role in global logistics.

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