Jurors for the coveted Sharjah award who evaluated the submissions met on 25th July to short-list 212 nominees. The winners will be announced on the sidelines of the 10th International Government Communication Forum (IGCF) 2021.
Launched in 2012 under the directives of H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, the SGCA fosters best professional practices in government communication in the UAE and the Gulf region by highlighting and recognising outstanding achievements by individuals and organisations in the field.
The 212 nominees accepted in the award’s 14 categories include 38 entries from Sharjah, 145 from other Emirates and a total of 29 entries from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, Lebanon, Sudan, Pakistan, Kuwait, Syria, Jordan, Morocco, and other countries across the greater Middle East.
Entries highlight governments’ response to COVID-19 crisis
The “Best Crisis Response-United Arab Emirates” category saw the largest number of participants with 41 entries, followed by the “Best Government Communication through New Media” with 24 entries. The “Best Practices for Dealing with the Coronavirus Crisis” global category attracted 21 submissions.
The “Best Applied Scientific Research in Government Communication” category received 18 entries; “Best Idea for Engaging Future Generations in the Arab World” category, 17; “Best Practices in Government Communication” (UAE) category, 15; “Best Social Media Influencer – Arab World” category, 14; and “Ideal Employee for Government Communication” category, which is exclusively for UAE entities, 12.
Other categories including “Best Youth Initiative in Government Communication” category, dedicated to the Arab World, received nine entries; the ‘Best Photo/Video in Government Communication’ Global, with eight; and the ‘Best Media Programme’ (Arab World), with six.
Five entries were accepted in the “Best Public Communication Initiative” category, which is dedicated to Sharjah entities. The “Best Practices for Dealing with Fake News” (Global) and “Best System Supporting Government Communication – UAE” categories received three entries each.
Tariq Saeed Allay, Director of the Sharjah Government Media Bureau, said, “The quality and content of entries that the SGCA’s 8th edition has attracted reflect the unique set of challenges faced by government communication teams across the world during the last two years. They also highlight the experiences gained while managing a crisis of unprecedented scale and scope, raising awareness about the COVID-19 situation and providing emotional and social support to the public. The entries this year are also a testament to the success achieved by the award to position itself regionally and globally, and to its role in establishing professional standards for government communication practices.”
“The ‘Best Practices for Dealing with the Coronavirus Crisis’, ‘Best Government Communication through New Media’ and ‘Best Crisis Response’ categories saw the largest number of participants, emphasising the need for government communication teams to have effective response strategies and to maintain strong communication with the audience. Government communication is a powerful tool for raising awareness, promoting development, strengthening social ties and keeping the community updated on any developments with openness and transparency,” Allay added.