Dubai Culture and Hayi sign strategic partnership to support creative community and enhance Dubai’s cultural scene

Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) collaborates on many projects with its partners in the public and private sectors, guided by a vision to support the emirate’s creative community. Within that context, the Authority is cooperating with ‘Hayi’ app, a free, local, social communication network for neighbourhoods in Dubai that encourages residents to communicate, endorse and befriend each other, create groups based on their locations, share common interests and preferences, as well as launch and participate in social initiatives and activities within their communities.

Through this cooperation, Dubai Culture aims to create interconnected creative neighbourhoods by offering interactive means of building a digital presence for creatives within their communities and providing them with a platform to enhance access and reach as well as help their businesses grow and thrive.

Al Quoz Neighbourhood

The cooperation and partnership agreement between Dubai Culture and Hayi seeks to connect creative talents in the different neighbourhoods across Dubai to provide them with the opportunity to showcase their work and provide their creative services. It will be implemented across three phases: the first stage will be the creation of the digital ‘Al Quoz Neighbourhood’ on the app that will give talents the opportunity to showcase their work, promote their products and share their performances in Al Quoz and other neighbourhoods in the city. At this stage, the app will also provide Dubai Culture the opportunity to disseminate all notifications and updates it wishes to share with the community members.


Hala BadriDirector General of Dubai Culture, said: “In line with our efforts to make Dubai the global capital of the creative economy by creating a stimulating climate for talents in the emirate, and in light of our mission to lay the foundations for an inclusive cultural and creative environment that attracts opportunities for constructive cooperation, we are always open to new ideas and visions that accompany the modern times and its developments in all fields of knowledge and creativity.”

Badri added: “Social media platforms have become a new and effective means for participation, community outreach and business support. We are always keen to invest in the latest tools that will help us achieve our cultural mission, in collaboration with experts in this field. Our partnership with the innovative Hayi app is within this framework and reflects our belief in the importance of public-private partnerships to support the creative community and promote the cultural landscape in Dubai. Our cooperation also falls within the framework of actively contributing to making Dubai the smartest and happiest city in the world.”


Badri affirmed that this partnership would have a positive impact on Dubai’s creative economy, as it would contribute to improving access and participation by promoting and increasing engagement within local digital neighbourhoods in the region, including the wider city, in addition to encouraging revenue and growth by allowing entrepreneurs to market their businesses and services and promote their offerings free of charge throughout the city. It also has an important social impact in creating a connected, synergetic, and positive creative community.


The Hayi app is currently available in English but will be available in Arabic in the future. The second phase of this collaboration is to include the launch of additional neighbourhoods until the entire city is covered, allowing each local company to access select neighbourhoods free of charge. The third phase will see the launch of a group feature to connect talents within their communities, as well as throughout Dubai. A calendar of events will also be launched, which will provide a more interactive way for talents and entrepreneurs to schedule their events and keep up with everything new at the sectoral level.

Chris Darnell, co-founder of Hayi, said: “The most important lesson we learned from the pandemic is the fundamental need for communication; there’s nothing more important than familiarity and communication within the neighbourhood where one lives. Health begins where we live, learn, work and play, among the people with whom we share our society and our culture with. Through our cooperation with Dubai Culture, we aim to create stronger and more connected neighbourhoods in which both residents and talents can rely on as well as help local companies connect with neighbourhoods of their choice throughout the city.”

Based on one of the priorities of its strategic roadmap 2020 – 2026 to develop an attractive creative economy, this partnership stems from Dubai Culture’s commitment to support small and medium-sized enterprises and start-ups in Dubai’s creative community and facilitate the operation of their businesses, as well as provide an environment that stimulates their growth and prosperity. It also stems from the Authority’s commitment to achieve the objectives of the Dubai Creative Economy Strategy that aims to make the emirate the global capital of the creative economy by 2025, and is also in line with its mission towards building a knowledge-based economy.