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Meet Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre

Meet Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre

Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre was established in late 2020

Abu Dhabi Arabic Lenguage Centre was established in late 2020 by a royal decree from His Highness the late Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, as part of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi. The Centre commenced its operations in January 2021, aiming to establish and drive the leadership of Arabic language, in the fields of knowledge, culture and creativity. This vision is founded in realization of the challenges facing the Modern Standard Arabic language, in terms of quality of Arabic publications, scientific research, and Arabic digital content.

With that, our mission runs into 4 main objectives; we aim to grow the appreciation and love for Arabic language to support its use in Abu Dhabi and help improve proficiency among its speakers; we work on promoting the Arabic language globally as a language of knowledge, culture and creativity; we support the Arabic digital content creation across online platforms and technologies; and we aim to develop scientific and intellectual research in multiple domains of Arabic language.

To achieve our vision and mission, the Centre operates based on an extensive framework of strategic programs and projects, each dedicated to a specific area serving our objectives:

The centre has a series of specialized projects aiming to support academic and intellectual research in Arabic. The projects, include the first-of-its-kind grants program for research in the field of Arabic language, with the aim of advancing scientific research efforts and creation of new knowledge about the language within cultural, linguistic and social contexts. In addition, the Centre partnered with Brill Publishing House, one of the most prestigious publishing houses, to publish an Arabic peer-reviewed journal entitled “Al Markaz: The Journal of Arab Studies”, as the first publication in Arabic by Brill, focusing on topics covering the Arabic language, literature and culture from the pre-Islamic period to the present day, and include critical reviews of books and events concerning Arab studies.

Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre also pays special attention to promoting the Arabic language literature and translation. Our translation project “Kalima” for example, is a leading initiative in UAE and the Arab world, that provides Arabic readers with treasures from world literature and has published more than 1,181 books in many fields to date, aiming to support the translation and publishing sectors.

Publishing is one key component of our programs, as we also work hand in hand with UAE and Arab publishers to improve the Arab book industry and bring in the international best practices to support its development and growth. Abu Dhabi International Book Fair and the Congress of Arabic Publishing and Creative Industries are two prominent projects within our portfolio. Both flagship events have become a think tank and a knowledge sharing platform for the Arab, Regional and Global Publishing and Creative Industries. They facilitate conversations between leaders, intellects and entrepreneurs in publishing, creative content, literature, and arts in order to foster sustainable cultural dialogue and rebuild a culture of Arabic reading among Abu Dhabi community.

An integral part of our strategic programs are literary and cultural awards. Arabic Language Centre now manages Sheikh Zayed Book Award, which has grown to become one of the most prestigious prizes in its field. The Sheikh Zayed Book Award honours creative individuals and organizations as well as young talent in 9 categories, to celebrate their contributions to Arab intellectual, cultural, literary and social life. This year we also launched the very first edition of Kan Al Jeel Award, which draws its name from one of the renowned poems by Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founding father of the United Arab Emirates. The Award celebrates the legacy of Nabati poetry and honours Sheikh Zayed’s contribution to it, to revive it in the hearts and minds of Emiratis and Arabs. The award will be presented in 6 categories, ranging from studies and research; to poetry arts, and translation.

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