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Complexity is the new normal: How AUS Executive Education is using complexity to help advance policy making
American University of Sharjah’s (AUS) Executive Education is working with government agencies throughout the UAE to help them advance their workforces’ policy making skills and respond to the current needs of their stakeholders. Members of the university’s faculty are taking their expertise from the classroom to the public sector, sharing their research and experience with public officials. Through initiatives such as the Sharjah Leadership Program and the Diploma in the Art of Public Policy Writing, hundreds of public service men and women have undertaken training to hone their leadership skills, and ensure policy initiatives are implemented in a manner most likely to benefit the community. With the UAE’s strong focus on optimising policy outcomes, the programs come at an opportune time.
For John Katsos, Associate Professor of Management at AUS and one of the faculty behind AUS’ leadership programs, having public officials understand the complex factors impacting their decision making is key to successful policy outcomes. He said:
“Complexity is the new normal for both the public sector and businesses. AUS’ Executive Education programs teach public service leaders how to better manage themselves and their organizations in complex environments. Whether the complexity arises from change, growth or the differences between cultures, we need to help our learners manage these challenges, and thrive in spite of them.”
Realizing these goals will require policy makers to work together across multiple platforms and manage complex, competing interests. Katsos added:
“With growing success comes increased complexity. The UAE has made enormous strides in recent years, meeting many of its objectives for economic growth, social harmony and the advancement of its citizens. In building upon these successes, UAE public policy makers and other public service officials will need to operate in an increasingly complex environment. In making decisions, they will need to balance social economic, scientific, technological, legal, ethical and political considerations (among others). By effectively understanding these complex factors, and how each impacts the others, UAE public service officials can be confident that new policies and services have a far-reaching, positive impact.”
For more information about AUS Executive Education, visit https://execed.aus.edu/.