SHARJAH -The International Government Communication Forum (IGCF) was launched by the Sharjah Government Media Bureau (SGMB) in 2012. This was a significant step towards improving communication practices in the region.
A powerful start for a prestigious award
Launched in 2014, SGCA swiftly evolved into a distinguished platform showcasing groundbreaking models of exceptional communication campaigns, strategies, and programmes that have profoundly impacted their respective communities.
Since its inception, the award has received more than 2,800 submissions from government, semi-government, and private entities in the UAE, the Arab world and from across the globe, with more than 690 international submissions since their expansion. Notably, Sharjah represented more than 600 entries while submissions from other emirates have surpassed 1,500 to date. This impressive level of engagement showcases the award's exceptional adaptability and ability to remain current and highly relevant.
From Sharjah and UAE to the world
HE Tariq Saeed Allay, Director General of the Sharjah Government Media Bureau, said, “Establishing the global communication standards calls for embracing noble practices and inspiring models, to create innovative pathways for advancing the communication industry. As a driving force in the progression of development, it is crucial to propel the communication industry's contribution to meet the goals and needs of our country and society as a whole. Sharjah Government Communication Award serves as a global platform, translating the vision of Sharjah and the UAE to amplify communication's role in fulfilling global development ambitions, as well as underlining the need for investment in its tools and strategies across all levels.”
The Director General added, “Over the past decade, SGCA has amassed knowledge, facilitated the exchange of experience, and honoured inspirational models, which, in turn, played a pivotal role in the award's development. Today, after nine successful editions, it has become a unique model and accolade. Tangible proof of its impact lies in the exceptional quality of the annual award submissions, coupled with its dynamic approach that allowed for a gradual expansion of its scope, starting from local participation, extending to the Gulf and the Arab world, and eventually evolving into an internationally renowned award.”
A holistic vision for communication
In its inaugural edition, SGCA centred primarily on media as the dominant communication channel. The succeeding edition broadened its focus to encompass comprehensive communication practices across institutions beyond the media sector. It recognised remarkable campaigns and strategies from numerous ministries and authorities, as well as prominent figures in the public domain, highlighting the fact that government communication went beyond traditional media practices and underscoring the need to deploy relevant communication tools across sectors and institutions tied to public affairs.
Expansion across the Arab world
Initially confined to UAE's government communication departments, SGCA's sphere of influence soon covered the Arab world, attracting communication experts, content creators, and departments throughout the region, all drawn to the high standards and criteria it had established.
Honouring local media leadership
The third edition of SGCA took place after Sharjah was recognised as the ‘Capital of Arab Press’ in 2016, further bolstering its commitment to promoting Emirati and Arab media. In this edition, the Dar Al Khaleej Printing & Publishing (publishers of Al Khaleej and Gulf Today newspapers) was honoured for their significant contribution to transforming government discourse into tangible outcomes, as reflected in economic growth rates, heightened social awareness, and successful navigation through various cultural and developmental challenges. The honour was previously claimed by influential media institutions such as the Sharjah Media Corporation, Dubai Media Corporation, and the MBC Group.
Inspirational models for regional development aspirations
During a transformative and challenging period in the Arab world, the award recognised the importance of showcasing practices and figures that had contributed significantly to the advancement and stability of their respective countries. HE Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE's Minister of Foreign Affairs, was lauded for his leading role in the national government communication system and his substantial contributions to shaping the UAE's foreign policy. The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation also received recognition for its exemplary communication through social media platforms.
SGCA continued its journey by embracing technological advancements and incorporating digital communication tools, establishing specific standards for government communication through digital channels and social media networks, as well as creating a new award category dedicated to GCC countries.
Going beyond the practical outcomes, SGCA recognised the theoretical and scientific aspects of government communication and played a pioneering role at the academic level. It aimed to elevate communication cadres and pave the way for government communication's intellectual, practical, and scientific development.
An exemplary effort in this direction was publishing a book titled, ‘Government Communication: Theory and Practice’ as it extended the scope to the wider Arab region during the 2019 edition. It profiled communication practices from winners of previous editions while summarising the award's extensive experiences. This rich content provided a valuable resource for specialists and experts in this sector and a trove of practical solutions for the region.
2020-2022 - global outreach
Since 2020, SGCA has witnessed one of its most noteworthy transformations, taking its hitherto national and Arab scope to global heights. This transformation was brought forth by a new strategy to feature more diverse presentation mechanisms and welcome participation from international communication professionals through six additional categories. Strategic partnerships were forged with renowned names such as National Geographic, the UAE's National Media Council, the UAE Federal Youth Foundation, the Arab Youth Center and the UAE University, further solidifying the award's international prominence.
Despite the formidable challenges posed by the recent pandemic and its widespread repercussions, SGCA maintained its adaptability and relevance. The 2021 edition centred on campaigns related to overcoming these challenges and the indispensable role of communication in mitigating their effects. In the subsequent year, the award's focus shifted to sustainability issues, emphasising the vital role of communication in raising awareness surrounding the significance of preserving resources, safeguarding the environment, and addressing other pressing developmental concerns.
Pakistani rupee advanced its winning momentum against US dollar, and other currencies in the open market amid strong economic cues.
On Saturday, the US dollar was being quoted at 285.15 for buying and 287.95 for selling.
Euro moves down to 309.9 for buying and 310.5 for selling. British Pound rate stands at 359.4 for buying, and 360.05 for selling.
UAE Dirham AED also moved down to 77.45 whereas the Saudi Riyal drops to 75.82.
|UK Pound Sterling||GBP||359.4||360.05|
|Hong Kong Dollar||HKD||36.38||36.48|
|New Zealand Dollar||NZD||173.44||175.44|
The price of gold fell by thousands of rupees as precious metal lost shine despite an upward trend in the international market.
On Saturday, the price of a single tola of 24-karat gold stands at Rs217,300 and 10 grams of 24k gold costs Rs186,300.
Meanwhile, single tola of 22 Karat gold costs Rs199,190, 21 karat rate costs Rs190,138 and 18k gold rate is Rs162,975.
Globally, gold prices hover at around $2072, gaining $32 on Saturday.
|Lahore||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Karachi||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Islamabad||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Peshawar||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Quetta||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Sialkot||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Attock||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Gujranwala||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Jehlum||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Multan||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Bahawalpur||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Gujrat||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Nawabshah||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Chakwal||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Hyderabad||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Nowshehra||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Sargodha||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Faisalabad||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|
|Mirpur||PKR 217,300||PKR 2,705|