Many of the local departments and authorities of culture in the different Emirates of the UAE, have developed local cultural strategies and plans to ensure the growth of the cultural sector at the local level, ones that complement efforts in the Federal level, but also build on the strengths of each Emirate and the priorities at the local level. The UAE has 7 Emirates and each Emirate contributes greatly to the development of the cultural sector in the country. Below is a list of some local authorities that have developed and implemented cultural strategies and plans:
* The Department of Culture and Tourism in Abu Dhabi (DCT): DCT regulates, develops and promotes culture and tourism in Abu Dhabi. Its cultural mandate is to preserve and promote Abu Dhabi's cultural heritage, to increase awareness and engagement with cultural heritage and the arts, to stimulate creativity, to build and enable capacity in Abu Dhabi's cultural sector and to contribute to economic growth and diversification. Its objectives aim for intellectual and artistic excellence by creating a dynamic and holistic cultural scene with a range of public engagement programs to nurture creativity and to support growth in the culture and creative industries. Below are a few more specific priorities for DCT in Abu Dhabi:
o Heritage: Historic monuments, ancient buildings, oases and natural heritage are the essential elements that constitute Abu Dhabi's historic environment. It is part of DCT's mandate to uncover traces of Abu Dhabi's ancient civilizations, as well as to document, preserve and ensure the maintenance of historic buildings. Our responsibility extends to the management and development of culturally significant locations, including oases and archaeological sites.
DCT's responsibility is to collect, safeguard, and document the intangible cultural heritage and history of the citizens of Abu Dhabi. Initiatives under the intangible heritage preservation mandate are supported through constant collaboration with other local and federal departments, authorities, ministries and civil society.
o Museums: Positioned at the forefront of Abu Dhabi's continued advancement into a leading global arts and cultural hub, DCT is mandated to develop and shape Abu Dhabi's historical and evolutionary narrative. DCT is responsible for the creation of a diverse array of world class museums and international cultural platforms of expression presented in the capital's Saadiyat Cultural District. The location already features Louvre Abu Dhabi, and will feature additional major museums - all of which will bring to the world a distinctive canvas of artworks and installations steeped in history, heritage, modernity and contemporary appeal. From housing artistic expressions transcending cultures and civilizations, to creating vibrant platforms for educational, cultural exchange, stage performances and artistic dialogue, the museums on Abu Dhabi's Saadiyat Cultural District are poised to become the heart of sustained multicultural exchange between local, regional and international art landscapes. Existing museums such as Al Ain Museum and the Dalma Museum allow visitors to journey into the UAE's proud national history, offering a glimpse into the inspirational values of the UAE's Founding Father, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, as well as the nation's rich history, culture and heritage. Al Ain Palace Museum, Al Jahili Fort and Qasr Al Muwaji in Al Ain also offer insights into the historical buildings of the United Arab Emirates, having been preserved, maintained and renovated into museums which form some of the mythical wonders of Al Ain.
o Promoting the arts: DCT seeks to offer a vibrant program of cultural, artistic and educational events to provide visitors with a unique cultural experience. By leveraging a series of lectures and seminars in collaboration with museums in Abu Dhabi, DCT reaches and engages the community through a wide range of cultural initiatives including exhibitions, performances, artscapes and other cultural events. DCT strives to foster a cultural environment for Abu Dhabi by supporting UAE-based artists as they pursue their professional careers, promoting cultural tourism and a deepened understanding of Abu Dhabi's artistic, cultural and historic institutions.
o Education and outreach: DCT is dedicated to expanding their cultural education programs to engage with audiences both resident in and visiting the UAE. A range of programs and outreach initiatives have been designed to enhance the accessibility of Abu Dhabi's culture and heritage. These initiatives prepare the community for a vibrant future full of artistic accomplishment, engaging with the next generation, with teachers, and with aspiring individuals by offering a range of educational materials and academic programs. Moreover, as part of their commitment to engaging with members of the community and creating platforms for knowledge sharing and skills development, DCT offers a series of training programs for young Emirati students.
o Abu Dhabi's Culture and Creative Industries Strategy 2020 - 2024: In 2019, Abu Dhabi developed a 5-year culture and creative industries strategy 2020-2024, working in collaboration with key sector partners. The Strategy seeks to strengthen Abu Dhabi's position as a globally recognized center of creative talent and a leading regional producer and exporter of creative and cultural content.
* Dubai Arts and Culture Authority (Dubai Culture): In October 2019, Dubai Culture announced a new cultural plan comprising of three overarching strategic objectives: (1) creating an effective and sustainable new cultural movement in Dubai, (2) making Dubai a premier destination for talent, and (3) developing the creative industries and economy. To implement the Cultural Plan, Dubai Culture will work with various cultural organizations. Below are several initiatives under the Culture Plan:
o A Creative Free Zone in Al Quoz: An initiative that aims to transform Al Quoz into a free zone for creative talent in the culture sector, providing comprehensive facilities and services from the conception stage through to design and production. The free zone will create an end-to-end system for creatives to produce, display and sell their works.
o Dubai Global Literary Season: Dedicated to the love of the written word, Dubai Global Literary Season aims to establish the city as the capital of knowledge development with more than 1,000 literary events hosting the top 100 Arab and international authors and publishers.
o School of Life: The initiative, which seeks to transform Dubai's public libraries into integrated cultural centers under the theme of School of Life, is aimed at boosting the cultural, creative and artistic lives of the Dubai community.
o A Destination for Land Art: The initiative aims to create a new global cultural tourism destination that enhances the creative capacity of the land. To be launched on the occasion of the UAE's Golden Jubilee, the initiative also seeks to create new landmarks to document Dubai's hosting of Expo 2020. Many different nationalities will contribute to its construction.
o Dubai Global Grad Show: An international exhibition to be organized as part of Dubai Design Week, Dubai Global Grad Show aims to inspire university graduates to find innovative solutions to community problems.
o Al Marmoum CineMania: An open-air international film festival in the Al Marmoom area to be organized in cooperation with local cinemas.
o Dubai's Iconic Architecture: A specialized committee to oversee the adoption of architectural designs that has the objective of making Dubai a destination for architectural innovation.
o Launch of Dubai's Architectural Identity: An initiative aimed at conceptualizing, designing and implementing a distinctive architectural identity for Dubai that distinguishes it from other major cities of the world.
o Hatta Cultural Carnival: A cultural carnival to be held in the winter season featuring poetry evenings, cultural events, art exhibitions and other events.
o Zabeel High School: Rehabilitation of Zabeel Secondary School for Girls to preserve the architectural history of the school and transform the building into a multi-functional space that offers a platform for young people to express their artistic talent.
o Art for Good: A philanthropic annual international art week that features the participation of local and international artists and businesspersons. The art week will include charity auctions, art performances and plastic arts exhibitions.
o Dubai Gold Line: The initiative features a competition to design the Dubai Gold Line, a special gold production line that establishes Dubai as a destination for gold.
o Discovering Hidden Cultural Gems with Uber: A new initiative created in partnership with Uber to help tourists easily find and visit Dubai's cultural treasures.
o Dubai Art Collection: The first integrated system created to help art enthusiasts buy, display and exchange artwork. The system will be operated through a partnership between the government and private sector. The initiative will help stimulate the creative economy and create opportunities for the public to engage more closely with art.
o Dubai Private Collections Season: The Dubai Private Collections Season will enable private art collectors to display their personal collections in public institutions such as Etihad Museum. The season will begin with an exhibition of the personal collection of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid al Maktoum, Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai.
o Dubai Festival of National Cultures: The initiative will provide a platform for highlighting the cultures and traditions of various nationalities living in Dubai. The celebrations at the event will showcase the traditions, food and special products of each nationality through an annual calendar of events to be held in collaboration with Dubai Tourism & Commerce Marketing.
o Traditional Handicrafts Strategy: In 2019, the Dubai Culture launched a Traditional Handicrafts Strategy to develop the traditional handicraft sector and encourage young people to get involved in it. For this, Dubai Culture works in unison with government and non-government entities, at local and federal levels, in order to effectively transfer knowledge and to further grow and develop the handicraft sector culturally, socially and economically.
o Strategic Roadmap for Dubai Culture: In 2020 Dubai Culture announced a Six Year Strategic Roadmap for Dubai Culture, outlining the Authorities strategic goals for the creative sector between 2020 and 2026.
* The Department of Culture in Sharjah: The Department focuses its efforts in the areas of culture and media in Sharjah. The main objectives of the Department are:
o Deliver high quality cultural programs and activities.
o Preserve national culture and arts.
o Contribute to national development goals.
o Preserve and promote awareness about the local heritage.
o Cooperate with local, Arab, and international cultural organizations to promote and strengthen culture.