The conference was officially opened today by HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline & Group
Riveting keynote speeches from leaders, compelling research papers, and speakers drawn from the industry and academia marked the opening of the 4th International Aviation Management Conference (IAMC) at Emirates Aviation University.
This year’s topical theme – The Future of Aviation: COVID-19 Pandemic and Challenges – has brought together leaders, professionals, research scholars, students and academia to discuss key strategic issues facing the industry, provide thought leadership and present ground-breaking research findings.
Authors and researchers are presenting around 30 papers on a fascinating range of topics, including passenger experience during the 2022 UK airport delays; aviation and the blockchain; sustainable aviation fuel; advanced urban mobility; women in aviation growth; effects of terminating short-haul routes; digital tech and passenger experience; impact of climate change on aircraft noise; modernising the Chicago convention; challenges, opportunities and the impact of COVID-19.
After the official opening by HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive Emirates Airline & Group, keynote speeches from senior executives of the Emirates Group set the scene for the conference.
Dr Ahmad Al Ali, Vice Chancellor Emirates Aviation University said: “We are building on the success of our previous three global conferences, and are focused on key topics, including sustainable aviation, technical advances, air transport policy and regulation. This conference is the definitive forum to discuss areas of mutual interest with delegates from the aviation industry – a much needed retrospective and an introspection. They bring a wealth of expertise, interesting and essential topics such as service quality, passenger satisfaction, challenges and opportunities post the pandemic.”
The Emirates Group’s senior executives attributed the UAE’s and Dubai’s rapid recovery to the vision and initiatives of the government to combat the pandemic, its agile, pragmatic approach, logistics and minimal disruption to supply chains, and the focus on innovation and sustainability. Speakers expanded on how the industry and its key players have pivoted during the pandemic, and the impact it has had on projects, initiatives, technologies, and opportunities.
Summary of keynote addresses
Adel Al Redha, Emirates’ Chief Operating Officer said the airline continuously monitored the developments around COVID-19 in the UAE and across the globe, and strongly believed there would be greater opportunities and demand for travel post-pandemic. A key investment was in the airline’s approach to hospitality and its roll-out, with employees commencing training to uplift the customer experience. Emirates also focused on enhancing its products and on introducing digital services using advanced technologies. Many initiatives, including digital applications, were introduced to enhance efficiencies in operations. Opportunities for youth to deploy their talents in the digital world, artificial intelligence and data analysis will be the future and of great interest to organizations.
Steve Allen, CEO dnata Group, took the audience through key business learnings during the pandemic, including gauging demand early, the need for timely hiring and investment decisions, adapting products, focusing on a sector approach, and communicating constantly. He cited cautious optimism given the challenges around labour markets worldwide, inflation and economic uncertainty, balanced by travel resilience and Dubai benefiting from a reshaped world economy. dnata’s strategy, is focused on investing in product, people and sustainability to remain a global player, catering to changed customer expectations, and shifting the industry’s narrative from price to quality.
Mahmood Ameen, CEO Emirates Flight Catering, explained the importance of adapting to the new world through next generation process re-engineering, technologies, digitalisation, and a skilled workforce. EKFC’s four key pillars are Sustainability with a focus on product, process and people, creating a better tomorrow for customers, communities, employees and the environment; Food security through quality and retention, cost alerts and smart monitoring; Lean Six Sigma principles through production, wastage control and rationalisation; and Diversification through alternative sourcing, capitalisation, partnerships and investment.
Organised by Emirates Aviation University and hosted in partnership with Dubai Police and Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, this year’s edition of the conference is being held on 21 and 22 November at the university campus.