I'm currently participating in the Abu Dhabi Action Learning Module sponsored by INSEAD and the UAE. We have a great group of 45 students from all over the world, some of which have worked in the region and others, like me, that have no experience here but are very interested.
The UAE was founded in 1972 by a conglomeration of seven emirates with Abu Dhabi as the capitol. The economy predominately depends on oil exports and has thus created a tremendous amount of wealth in the country. Unlike other prosperous nations, the wealth came before industrial development and the UAE is now using the wealth created by a resource-based economy to diversify into the industrial and technology sectors.
Mubadala is a government mandated investment fund to diversify the UAE's industry from oil and gas for a sustainable future economy. The fund represents about 10% of the wealth from oil resources. One sector that Mubadala has focused on is aerospace manufacturing. The Strata plant produces parts for Airbus and employs many local employees, 85% of which are women. Global partnerships bring industry to UAE. The Siemens regional headqaurters, for example, is in the new Masdar City, which is the first fully sustainable city in the world. The Masdar Institute conducts research in sustainability and renewables.
Other Mubadala investment projects include renewables, utilities, healthcare, and other segments of the oil industry. Under a separate mandate, the UAE is also investing in nuclear energy.