16 December 2018
Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has today organised the ‘Risk & Resilience Conference 2018,’ under the patronage of HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council of Dubai, with the theme ‘Enlightening Today’s Unknowns for Tomorrow.’ The conference, which was organised in partnership with Ernst & Young, was attended by HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of DEWA; HE Aisha Miran. Assistant Secretary General, Strategy Management and Governance Sector at the Executive Council of Dubai; Dr. Ahmed Al Nusairat, Coordinator General of the Dubai Government Excellence Program (DGEP); Omran Sharaf, the Emirates Mars Mission Project Manager (Hope Probe) at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre; Habiba Al Marashi, Chairperson of Emirates Environmental Group; DEWA’s Executive Vice Presidents and Vice Presidents, and officials from the government and private sectors.
A number of international speakers in risk and resilience took part in the conference, which was organised in Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. These included Michio Kaku, an American theoretical physicist; Mark Gallagher, a motivational speaker in car racing; David Coulthard, a Formula 1 champion; and other prominent experts.
“This year’s conference is particularly important due to the essential role of risk management, resilience, and business continuity in realising DEWA’s updated vision to become a Sustainable Innovative Leading Utility. It also supports DEWA’s efforts to implement the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to be prepared for the rapid changes, according to a vision that not only anticipates the future, but makes it. DEWA operates a rigorous risk management system, bolstering its resilience by anticipating risks and preparing for change, to ensure business continuity. We also adapt our work environment and operations to support national strategies and goals, and deliver uninterrupted supplies of reliable electricity and water services to over 850,000 customers in Dubai according to the highest levels of availability, reliability, and quality worldwide,” said Al Tayer in his keynote speech in the conference.
“We are hosting this conference to continue our efforts to develop risk management in a systematic and effective way. DEWA is the Middle East's first organisation to implement the SAP Risk Management 10.1 and adopt best international practices based on the ISO 31000 certificate. DEWA also received the Business Continuity Management System (ISO 22301) for its integrated operations and is the first utility in the Middle East and North Africa to do so. DEWA also received many prestigious international awards and certificates, including the Middle East Risk and Crisis Management Initiative Excellence Award at the 7th Middle East Municipalities and Smart Cities Excellence Awards. DEWA also obtained the Cyber Risk Strategy Award in the Global Risk Award for Building Risk Management Capability from the Institute of Risk Management in 2016. We also collaborated with the British Standards Institute to set the world's first Publicly Available Standard (PAS) to document best risk management practices for the electricity and water utility sector. This new standard is a key pillar in developing risk management standards and addressing any problems or gaps in existing global standards and practices, and we expect it to be completed and implemented across utilities around the world by September 2019,” added Al Tayer.
“DEWA’s efforts have also contributed to global benchmarks. In a new achievement, the UAE, represented by DEWA, maintained its first global ranking for the second year running for Getting Electricity in the World Bank’s Doing Business 2019 report. DEWA achieved 100% in all four criteria, including the reliability and transparency of tariffs indicator. DEWA achieved very competitive results in global benchmarking. It achieved the lowest customer minutes lost per year (CML) in the world of 2.68 minutes, compared to 15 minutes in Europe,” noted Al Tayer.
“DEWA is committed to training its employees in risk management, business continuity, and crisis management to enhance our capabilities to identify potential threats and develop pre-emptive plans to prevent crises from happening or mitigate their effects if they happen. This conference aims to spread a culture of risk management and best practices in this area. We also aim to share our expertise and knowledge with partners and stakeholders from the government and private sectors to ensure enhanced operational performance and sound planning to realise strategic objectives and achieve the highest levels of excellence and quality to serve people and achieve their happiness. I am confident that this conference will play a key role in achieving these goals, furthering the government's efforts to bolster corporate resilience, set effective risk management standards, ensure business continuity, and handle emergencies with the highest levels of professionalism and efficiency,” concluded Al Tayer.
“EY is proud to be working with the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) on presenting the latest risk management and resilience practices and technology to organizations in the region. It is critical to ensure that as smart cities like Dubai continue to grow, they have the strategic capabilities in place that will help them thrive in the digital age,” said Clinton Firth, MENA Cyber Security Leader at Ernst and Young.
The conference featured lectures and discussion panels that discussed different topics. These included ‘Futuristic Data Technology and its Impact on Risk Management Strategies and Professionals,’ ‘Formula 1 Approach to Risk Management and Strategy Development,’ ‘Risk Management in Real Time during Races,’ and ‘The Future of Resilience - Building Strategic Capabilities to Thrive in the Disruption Era.’
Participants commended DEWA for organising the Risk and Resilience conference annually and for hosting a number of international prominent speakers and experts in these arears to speak about the different aspects of risk and resilience and how to prepare for rapid changes.