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Bond establishes new link with Dubai

Australia’s presence in Dubai’s real estate property sector will take on a new dimension from February with Bond University answering the call from the Emirate’s government to up-skill its property industry.

Bond University has designed a Master’s Degree for the peak real estate education body, the Dubai Real Estate Institute (DREI), which will focus on marrying international best practice within the United Arab Emirates market.

The DREI is managed by the Real Estate Regulatory Authority – part of the Dubai Land Department – which was formed by decree of his Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rasheed Al Maktoum, UAE Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai.

Bond’s Head of the Mirvac School of Sustainable Development, Professor George Earl said the classes would be largely aimed at UAE nationals, which make up 90 per cent of DREI members.

“The UAE has introduced one of the world’s toughest sustainability codes with all new development required to meet five-star sustainability standards,’’ said Professor Earl. “Within the last year there’s been a major push to up-skill the industry to these values. 

“Dubai’s property market has greatly matured and there’s a desire from the Government for property practitioners in the Emirate to display world-leading professionalism, and integrate national standards with international practices.

“In theory, Bond could become the main educator in real estate in the UAE, which opens up tremendous opportunities for the university and Australia’s property sector.’’

Bond was asked to draft a proposal for the Master’s Degree in appreciation of the University’s focus on sustainability in development.

The Master in Real Estate Degree, which will be taught at Dubai Health Care City, has been designed to be internationally relevant for developers, development managers, property managers, corporate real estate advisors, property analysts, property investors and financers.

The curriculum is modelled on Bond’s existing post-graduate programs, but will be altered to reflect the cultural differences of the UAE.

“We don’t focus on negative gearing or tax breaks because Dubai is tax exempt,’’ said Professor Earl, “and their legal system is obviously different.’’

Course modules include Economics of Real Estate, Real Estate Finance and Investment, Sustainable Building Services, Planning Process and Development Maximisation and Property Management.

“The courses will allow post-graduates involved in the challenging UAE property market the highest qualification with a focus on their working environment,’’ said Professor Earl.

“At Bond, we have a real strength in terms of sustainability, particularly economic sustainability, and that was seen as particularly attractive for the DREI.’’

The creation of the Master's degree has been around 12 months in the making. Bond University has been a partner of the RERA for the past three years.

Professor Earl said the Gold Coast and Dubai had similar traits.

“Both cities boast well-developed urban landscapes and there are also a number of private property companies that have undertaken projects in both centres.

“I think Australia and the Gold Coast will benefit from this new relationship in terms of study and professional interaction with Dubai.’’

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