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Derasat Hosts Seminar on Institutional Strategic Planning

Derasat Hosts Seminar on Institutional Strategic Planning

The Bahrain Center for Strategic, International, and Energy Studies (Derasat) recently organized a seminar titled ‘The Role of Strategic Planning in Institutional Work’ as part of its ‘Think Talks’ lecture series. The seminar revolved around four key topics, including the historical evolution of strategic thinking, the importance of strategic planning in implementing institutional plans, the role of strategic planning in addressing challenges, and its contributions to achieving organizational goals.

Dr. Hamad Ebrahim Al-Abdulla, Executive Director of Derasat Center, delved into the historical development of strategic thinking, tracing its roots back to ancient conflicts and its connection to military organization and planning. He shed light on early writings related to strategic planning in ancient China and Athens, highlighting its evolution from the Middle Ages to the present day. Strategic planning has now become a crucial component in politics, economics, and institutional management, serving as an indispensable tool for both individuals and organizations.

Samaa Yousef Al Raees, President of the Bahraini Society for Strategic Planning, stressed the importance of strategic planning in implementing institutional plans. She emphasized its significance in achieving organizational goals, enhancing competitiveness, and effectively navigating complex work environments. The presentation covered effective formulation of strategies, alignment of organizational goals with strategic initiatives, and the exchange of ideas and scientific methods applicable to strategic planning across diverse organizational settings. Al Raees also underscored the pivotal role of the BSSP in promoting strategic management, supporting local organizations and individuals, and fostering the development of management and strategic planning skills.

The third topic in the seminar discussed the role of strategic planning in addressing challenges, using the experience of the Bahrain Airport Company (BAC) as a case study. Leena Ahmed Faraj, Vice President of Strategic Implementation and Business Development at BAC, showcased the plans implemented and steps taken by the company to ensure business continuity for logistical services and air freight during the COVID-19 pandemic, all while relying on competent national resources. Her presentation included model BAC crisis management initiatives, focusing on the pandemic’s impact on the aviation and air freight sectors, two of the most vital sectors during the pandemic. Leena addressed the steps of identifying objectives and assessing programs and procedures by utilizing the roles and capacities of several proficient departments within the company’s structure.

Alya Ali Al Aali, Chief Strategy and Data Analytics Officer at the Labor Fund (Tamkeen), delivered the fourth topic on the role of strategic planning in achieving organizational goals. She emphasized the pivotal role of strategic planning in establishing a clear path for the organization to achieve its strategic objectives, with a particular focus on supporting local entrepreneurship. Furthermore, she highlighted the importance of aligning organizational plans and policies with Bahrain’s Vision 2030 and sustainable development goals. Al Aali stressed the significance of strategic planning as an ongoing and continuous process within all institutions, adhering to the highest international standards and best practices. This approach aims to enhance national capabilities and cultivate a culture of strategic thinking and planning.

The seminar was moderated by Dr. Ashraf Mohammed Keshk, Director of the Strategic and International Studies Programme in Derasat’s Studies and Research Directorate.


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