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Illustration by Joaquin Kunkel

UAE Updates

A look into what’s been going on in the UAE this week.

Sep 30, 2018

Post Malone Announced as Headline Performer at Abu Dhabi F1 Yasalam After Race Concerts
The multi-platinum rapper and singer-songwriter, Post Malone, has been announced as the fourth and headlining artist of this year’s Yasalam After-Race Concerts at the du Arena.
Since breaking into the rap scene in 2015 with his soulful Soundcloud single White Iverson, Post Malone has populated the U.S. Billboard Top 100 Chart with a constant stream of successful albums and record-breaking features, including Congratulations, Better Now and Rockstar. His sophomore album — Beerbongs & Bentleys — climbed the charts with nine songs in the U.S. Top 20, breaking The Beatles’ 54-year record for most simultaneous hits within that Top category, Billboard Reports.
On Thursday, Nov. 22, all one, two and three-day Abu Dhabi Grand Prix ticket holders will get a chance to see Post Malone make his debut appearance in the Middle East on the tenth edition of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and tenth anniversary of the After-Race concerts. Over the years, Yasalam has managed to fill du Arena with bill after bill of A-list megastars, including Beyoncé, Kanye West, Aerosmith, Calvin Harris and UAE’s own Hussain Al Jassmi, among others.
This year’s lineup is no exception. On Nov. 23, Post Malone will pass the torch to Canadian R&B “Starboy,” The Weeknd. Sam Smith will let sparks fly on Saturday evening with an angelic performance of his romantic pop discography. The four-day chain of performances will rock out to a powerful close with Axl Rose, Slash and Duff Mckagan of Guns N’ Roses jamming to Welcome to the Jungle, Sweet Child O’ Mine and November Rain on the final race day.
The Grand Prix is fast approaching and tickets are selling out even faster, but it's not too late to join in on the festivities. Tickets are available online through the Yas Marina Circuit Website, through the Circut’s Call Center — 800 927 — and in all Etihad Shops and Virgin Megastores.
India Beat Bangladesh by Three Wickets at Asia Cup in the UAE
On Friday, Sept. 28, the national cricket teams of India and Bangladesh competed at the Dubai International Stadium for the chance to win the 14th installation of the Asia Cricket Cup. From Sept. 15 to Sept. 28, teams from six nations — India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Hong Kong, Pakistan and Afghanistan — traveled to the UAE for a series of 50-overs games spectated by loyal crowds of over 25,000 people.
In Group A, India started off with a quick win over Hong Kong by 26 runs, followed by a historical match against Pakistan that ended in victory by just eight runs.
Many cricket fans, like Khaleej Times’ James Jose, were stunned by Pakistan's performance throughout the tournament and were quick to comment on the implications of rivalry and the importance of a “dream final” between India and Pakistan.
“The running rivalry between the two neighbours has been the centerpiece, the pièce de résistance, of the biggest cricket festival in Asia. And to add to the plot-line was the ICC Champions Trophy final last year and the prospect of two India-Pakistan fixtures,” said Jose in a Khaleej Times article.
In the Super Four stage, Pakistan succumbed once again to the Indian cricket squad and also fell short in their crucial match against Bangladesh where they lost by 37 runs, ultimately eliminating them from the tournament.
Shikhar Dhawan of India and Mushfiqur Rahim of Bangladesh were powerful forces on and off the grounds, scoring 327 and 297 runs for their respective teams before their clash in the finals.
Last night’s final was thrilling, tense and close, yet Bangladesh’s grit and determined spirit was not enough to prevail over the Indian defending champions. Needing six runs in the last over to claim the title, India achieved their goal on the last ball to surpass the Bangladeshi by three wickets.
UAE Universities Stagnant in Global Higher Education Rankings
Four national institutions have retained their place in The Times Higher Education World University Ranking for the 2019 compilation, despite a significant increase in the number of included universities since the 2018 edition.
In total, the index includes over 1,250 of the world’s best universities and ranks them according to strength, region and research. Khalifa University, UAE University in Al Ain, the American University in Sharjah and the University of Sharjah all retained their standard positions on the 2019 MENA Regional Rankings.
Khalifa University — which was formed through the merger between the original Khalifa University, Masdar Institute of Science and Technology and the Petroleum Institute Abu Dhabi — received a score of 100 and 96.4 for its income security and international outlook respectively, but was credited 25.3 points for teaching, The National reports.
Dr. Tod Larsen, President of Khalifa University, has commented on the institution’s global status in the past and has boasted about its potential for expansion.
“These rankings take [into] account of the amount of papers that are published and where they’re published, and how much that work is cited. To have enough of a faculty doing enough work enables you to move up in the rankings,” said Larsen to The National speaking on the university’s improvement in the QS World University Rankings. “I expected the rankings to improve. We are all young universities. Our faculty is doing good work and it just needed the time to make its way into the literature.”
Khalifa University, however, did not elevate its overall position in the MENA Regional Rankings and remained in a group of institutions placed between 301 and 305. The University of Sharjah experienced similar stagnation, placing within the 801 to 1000 groupings, despite improving three of its ranked variables in the last year.
The American University of Sharjah decreased its institutional ranking from the 601 to 800 category to the 801 to 1000 group. Lastly, the UAE University in Al Ain improved its status from 501 to 600 last year and now occupies a spot in the 351 to 400 category.
Dylan Palladino is News Editor. Email him at
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