Best Research and

2 Winners

Best Programs, Curricula, Teaching Methodologies and Practices

2 Winners

Khalifa International Award for Early Learning Field

The Khalifa international Award for Early Learning Field is an International Education Award founded in the United Arab Emirates. The Award is intended to enhance the educational sector within the UAE, and throughout the Arab world at large, by honouring the distinguished efforts of educators in the various fields of teaching and specialised education.

The education process, with all the achievements made to date at various levels, will continue to face challenges. Such challenges will require diligent work, innovative policies and practices in order to keep pace with the technological and scientific advancement in the world.

His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan

President of the United Arab Emirates

The Award’s aim is to usher in a new dynamism in the educational process, in tune with contemporary advancements in scientific knowledge and information technology.

His Highness Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan

Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs Chairman of the Council of Trustees of The Khalifa Award for Education

Award Fields

The Award is intended to discover and recognize research, programmes, methodologies and advanced teaching practices.

Best Research and Studies

We seek to identify research on early childhood education and care that supports improvements in practice. This category includes studies that provide innovative solutions to problems, new insights into learning and teaching, and enrich the evidence base for policy and practice in ways that can lead to meaningful improvements in early learning.
To apply, Applicants must submit a research paper of 30-50 A4 pages (including research supplements), following the APA style guide. The research must be original, not adapted from a thesis paper or dissertation, and not already awarded by any institution or used as a research paper for an academic degree.


Best Programs, Curricula, Teaching Methodologies and Practices

We seek to identify initiatives that aim to improve early learning in homes, informal care, or formal care and education with demonstrated improvements in quality and/or the learning and development of the young children served.
To apply, Applicants must provide a complete description of the initiative in PDF format.
This should include information on the inputs and their cost, outputs, where it has been applied, and the results to date. The information provided should be sufficiently detailed and complete to inform others who wish to learn from and replicate the initiative. This work must be original.


His Highness Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan
Cabinet Member and Minister of Tolerance

When the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan united the Emirates in 1971 and founded our nation, he instituted an educational system that reflected his conviction that the true wealth of our country lies in its men and women. Our national leaders who follow Sheikh Zayed’s vision for the future of the UAE recognize that education in the early school years offers a unique, never to be duplicated, opportunity for children to develop their thinking and their communication and creativity skills that help ensure their future contributions to the world. I join people from around the world in applauding the establishment of the Global Khalifa international Award for Early Learning and congratulate those who will be recognized by this distinguished award for their unparalleled contributions to the development of our future leaders and innovators.

His Excellency Hussain Bin Ibrahim Al Hammadi
Minister of Education

The success of the educational process depends on the attention paid to each stage of study. Early childhood is one of the most important stages that must receive due attention and care, considering that it is the stage, which supports the child’s growth in terms of skill, knowledge, and behavior. In this stage, the child’s capabilities and life outcome are enhanced based on the rapid development and growth of mental processes. This makes the child a repository of understanding and memorization with the ability to deal positively with his surroundings.

The goal of education is to create an empowered, cognitive and skilled generation armed with values, virtues, noble morals, and positive citizenship. This necessitates us to take into account the importance of early childhood programs, adopt the best of these programs and build a pioneer education system that brings about qualitative outputs. Consequently, this goal contributes to pushing forward the wheel of the student’s educational and practical progress and consolidating the objectives under the UAE Centennial 2071, which depend on investing in people.

Her Excellency Noura Al Kaabi
Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, Chair of the National Committee for Education, Culture and Science

“The Khalifa Award for Early Learning is a testament to our leadership’s vision for the nation’s youth, in raising and educating them to be our country’s next pioneers. The launch of the global edition of Khalifa Award for Early Education aims to support and encourage research studies, best practices and innovation, as well as promoting the culture of excellence in early childhood education. With developmental programmes and policies that nurture a child’s potential and foster his/her talent, we will continue to support the future generation who will be equipped with science and knowledge to innovatively face challenges of tomorrow.”

Her Excellency Hessa Bint Essa Buhumaid
Cabinet Member and Minister of Community Development

Year after year, “Khalifa Award for Education” worked toward enhancing individuals in different fields of education, and promoting knowledge, creativity and excellence. Today, the award is launching “Khalifa International Award for Early Education” a cross-border knowledge transfer. This award is from the United Arab Emirates to the world carrying a message of new aspirations and contributions to achieve the best for humanity. The award, reflects the first critical years of a child’s life where the personality characteristics from intellectual capabilities to social behavior is shaped. Toward more success “Khalifa International Award for Early Learning” Team.

Her Excellency Jameela Al Muhairi
Minister of State for Public Education

Early childhood is characterized by the fact that children acquire the foundational skills and knowledge that will accompany them most of their lives. They also develop positive dispositions towards themselves, others and the world around them. When properly stimulated, brain development is most rapid during this crucial phase. Investing in quality early childhood programs, which cater to all developmental domains and promote the values and traditions, enables us to intervene at the right moment to create a new generation who are successful both in their educational and career paths, and most importantly become positive citizens who can fulfil our nation’s ambitious 2071 goals.

Steven Barnett
Chairman Awarding Committee Member

“The new Khalifa International Award for Early Learning brings to the world’s attention the critical importance of education in the first years of life in setting the foundation for the well-being of children and societies, by rewarding and publicizing excellence in early childhood research, programs, and practice.”
“The Khalifa International Award for Early Learning raises to unprecedented heights the recognition—nationally and internationally—accorded research, policy, and practice that support excellence in the education of young children.”
“The Khalifa International Award for Early Learning acknowledges the tremendous value of high-quality early childhood education for children, families, and nations around the globe as well as in the UAE.  As the pre-eminent prize for excellence in research to improve early childhood practice, and for early childhood programs, the award will foster progress at home and around the globe. Educational leaders, teachers, parents, and the public will benefit from the knowledge highlighted and disseminated.”
“The Khalifa International Award for Early Learning rewards the world’s best research and programs to support excellence in the education of young children. The Award elevates efforts to improve learning in the early years to their proper place among the foremost national and international priorities. “

Fatima AlBastaki
Awarding Committee Member

It has been an honour to be involved in the Khalifa International Award for Early Learning this year.  As an experienced educator and administrator with a depth of knowledge in the area of Early Childhood Education, I am inspired to see the recognition given to this area internationally, as well as the high caliber of outstanding work that will be submitted for the awards, in both the research and practice areas.

Iram Siraj
Awarding Committee Member

“Early Childhood Research is gaining prominence across the globe as the sector is recognised as a legitimate and sometimes vital stage of human development. However, the quality of research, researchers and the capacity for excellence is still developing. This Khalifa award is a rare recognition of the existing and growing capacity of high calibre studies and researchers. It is a timely recognition and will motivate further excellence and expansion of early childhood research across the globe.”
“The timely Khalifa award offers generous recognition of research excellence in early childhood research. There are very few awards that provide such motivation to the best researchers in the field to aspire them to aim even higher. The award offers the opportunity to researchers to extend their reach and impact across the world.”
“There are very few international research awards for educational research and virtually none for those who research in the field of early childhood education. The Khalifa award is a genuine and unique contribution to raising the status and value of early childhood research in the world.”

Jana Fleming
Awarding Committee Member

The Khalifa Award’s special attention to supporting research and evidence-based practice to inform the creation of early learning programs for children with special needs is especially timely and positioned to make a meaningful contribution to the field worldwide. This unique award will not only enhance the capabilities of researchers, policymakers, and practitioners, it will also further inspire them to strive to enrich early childhood programs in order to promote optimal outcomes for all children.

Kiyomi Akita
Awarding Committee Member

Launching Khalifa International Award for Early Learning adds a great opportunity for early childhood educators and researchers around the world.  Early childhood education practices are embedded in the local culture, but high quality early education systems have common features.Khalifa International Award for Early Learning would positively contribute to promoting high quality early childhood education internationally. Early learning makes children happy and contributes to the wellbeing of and families and societies. We are looking forward to raising the awareness of this Award in many countries,and sharing the dialogue through Kalifa Award for Education.

Award Journey

  • 10 JAN 2022
    Official Launching & Marketing Campaign
  • JAN - 18 APRIL 2022
    Receiving & Screening Applications
  • MARCH - JUNE 2022
    Assessment of Candidates’ Submissions
  • JULY 2022
    Announcement of Winners
  • 2023
    Awarding Ceremony

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