Libraries in the Arab World are embracing artificial intelligence (AI) and sustainable practices to foster comprehensive growth in their societies. The Sharjah Prize for Library Literature Forum, organized by Sharjah Public Library (SPL), highlighted the significance of AI in information acquisition and the importance of eco-friendly knowledge environments.
The forum emphasized the need to reduce energy consumption, minimize paper usage, and optimize resource utilization in libraries and knowledge institutions. It recommended the active involvement of library leaders, readers, and researchers in environmental awareness initiatives. Additionally, the forum called for the cultivation of innovative spaces through cutting-edge technologies, enriching teaching and learning experiences while contributing to sustainable development goals.
Academics, researchers, and library enthusiasts from across the Arab world enthusiastically participated in the event. They commended the research conducted by the award winners during the twenty-third edition of the forum, which focused on teaching, learning, and libraries’ strategies for integration, empowerment, and exemplary practices.
A session titled ‘Sustainability in the Cognitive Environment’ discussed sustainable practices across different academic disciplines. Prominent speakers highlighted the critical importance of establishing collaborative frameworks between institutions on a global and local scale to promote sustainable knowledge practices. The session also explored the role of green libraries in reducing their carbon footprint.
Another session delved into the award-winning research of Dr. Prof. Dr. Mahmoud Sharif Ahmed Zakaria, which examined the integration of information institutions within the UAE education policy document. The research focused on the contribution of these institutions to education and research, as outlined by the Ministry of Education in 2018.
Dr. Nahla Mohamed Moussa’s research, which secured second place, shed light on how students in the UAE perceive and engage with artificial intelligence tools in academic libraries. The study involved 484 students from various colleges and universities in the United Arab Emirates.
The final session highlighted the research of Dr. Emad Issa Saleh and Dr. Amani Mohamed El-Sayed, who spoke about creativity and innovation in Arab school libraries. They emphasized the libraries’ contribution to education and their role in facilitating learning.
Eman Bushlaibi, Director of Sharjah Public Library, highlighted the forum’s objective of enhancing libraries as comprehensive development catalysts for Arab societies. The discussions and awarded research are expected to foster better educational and research environments, promote innovation, and address challenges in the region.
The forum covered various topics such as institutional publishing, sustainable knowledge environments, teaching and learning, and libraries through engaging discussion sessions. It also recognized and celebrated the exceptional contributions of the winners of the twenty-third edition’s awards.
The Arab World’s libraries’ embrace of AI and sustainability showcases their commitment to fostering comprehensive growth and creating knowledge environments that promote sustainability and innovation.