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AI Tech Zones and The Ecosystem

Source: Pixabay

I am fascinated by the Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) ecosystems and consult and teach the same. For example, I teach the course in the Masters of Public Policy at the Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government. All my students in this course analyze the STI ecosystem of their focus and recommend strategies. Over the years, we have created strategies for space, personalized medicine, Islamic banking, creative industries (NFTs), logistics, etc. We use a toolkit Sumaya Al Hajeri, and I developed to help in this process: Competitive Industry Clusters Analysis: Strategy Development Toolkit.

The idea of AI in the STI strategy was further explored in my chapter titled "Building tech zones to enhance AI." This article was published in "Handbook of Artificial Intelligence and Robotic Process Automation: Policy and Government Applications." In this article, I look at the four-fold process for AI-cluster development and go through a series of questions that those in charge of a cluster must answer. The thought piece will help governments build better STI clusters (since AI permeates most industries).

Source: Melodena Stephens (2020) in Building tech zones to enhance AI

But a strong STI cluster is also linked to the city's culture of entrepreneurship. So I would recommend reading my other chapter, "Cities as Custodians for Entrepreneurial Opportunity." Here I look at city-level entrepreneurship and the three key pull factors: (1) city configuration, (2) city connectivity, and (3) city culture. This article was published in the book: Urban Studies and Entrepreneurship.

Of course, I am a big advocate of good governance. In our recent white paper on Metaverse and Governance, published by IEEE Standards Association, my co-authors and I look at what is missing in this new trend. I believe new technology has so much potential, provided we also build safety nets and rail guards in the design process. We cannot afford to use the old excuse - Let us wait and find out! We live in a more connected, integrated world that does not allow mistakes to be easily erased.

Of course, I love to talk about these ideas and train on these topics! Do contact me if you want to know more! You can also read more articles on


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