Dubai, United Arab Emirates – From the Desert to the City of Endless Possibilities

A still A shot by Balaji Narasimhan
Photo Credit – Balaji Narasimhan (MGB Cohort Sept 17)

The mystery of Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) unveiled in my eyes as I immersed in the SP Jain Global Learning. From desert to city of endless possibilities, it is heartening to see UAE initiatives that improves the prosperity, convenience and ultimately, the happiness of people. The government created and sustained an efficient social and economic system that has not only benefited its own citizens, but also people from all corners of the globe.

Political Leadership, Happiness and Economic Development

At the Etihad Museum, I learnt about the union of 7 states that formed the United Arab Emirates on December 2, 1971. The current ruler of Dubai is headed by the presence of Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE. His leadership, vision, and positivity transformed Dubai into a happy city in the Arab world that serves as an epicenter for opportunity and prosperity where millions of people have a chance to realise their dreams. The Free Zones of Dubai strengthens the bond between the emirate and global trade.

Unity in Diversity-Grand Mosque and the Church

Grand Mosque Dubai

During our term in Dubai, we also visited the Sheikh Zayed Mosque, a place that is open to people from across the globe. Using artisans and materials from many countries including India, Italy, Germany, Egypt, Turkey, Morocco, Pakistan, Malaysia, Iran, China, United Kingdom, New Zealand, Republic of Macedonia and United Arab Emirates, the Mosque inspired me with its design and construction.

Dubai, Smart City – the Logistic Hub of the World

dubai smart city

Dubai is emerging as the modern-day crossroads – its strategic location connecting East and West—linking Asia, Europe and Africa. The Dubai Airport and Ports link the business activities and acts like a big classroom for logistics students like me.

I am inspired by its innovation and ambitious move having world class airports and airline like Emirates which we have visited.

Visit to the world’s tallest iconic building Burj Khalifa amazed me – the collaboration of the brightest mind and skills to make the tallest building stand above all odds. In awe of Dubai’s iconic building and cutting-edge city planning with efficient transportation system. Indeed, Dubai has become a leader in smart city design not only in the Middle East, but globally.

Dubai, Humanitarian Hub of the World


We indulged in valuable Immersion programs at UNHCR Dubai, which is in International Humanitarian City (IHC), the largest humanitarian logistic hub of the world. It’s strategic location in Dubai, near the site of operation and in close proximity to the Middle East’s biggest seaport, allows efficient and seamless coordination between manufacturers/suppliers, logistic staff, and field staff.

Humanitarian Accelerators and Year of Giving


Dubai Future Accelerators
Photo Credit: Megna Kalvani (Student Life Manager – SP Jain, Dubai Campus)

We interacted with Dubai Future Accelerators during this year of giving, which launched Humanitarian Accelerators connecting start-ups and established companies from around the world with UAE’s humanitarian sector to tackle social, cultural and environmental challenges in the Arab Region. This initiative in helping the refugees affirmed me about the perfect timing of Global Logistics and Supply Chain Industry Project entitled “The Role of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management: From Security to Sustainability.”

To conclude, immersion at Dubai, UAE gives me relevant global learning. Nothing in this world is impossible – Dubai turned from a Desert to a City of Endless Possibilities, becoming the smart and happy city connecting the world. All are possible, just take risks, have courage and faith.

About the author – Shirley Paynor

shirley paynor

Shirley Paynor is a Global MBA student with SP Jain School of Global Management specialising in Logistics and Supply Chain Management. She has over 11 years of experience in handling Business and International Development Projects across continents in Asia, Europe, Latin America and Oceania. Shirley enjoys solving unstructured problems and delivering strategic outcomes bringing profitability, innovation, and sustainability.


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