Bodour bint Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi

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Bodour bint Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi
Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi - March 2018 (cropped).png
Al Qasimi in 2018
Born1978 (age 43–44)
Emirate of Sharjah, UAE
SpouseSheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi
IssueSheikha Maryam bint Sultan Al Qasimi
Sheikh Ahmed bin Sultan Al Qasimi
Sheikha Alia bint Sultan Al Qasimi
HouseAl-Qasimi of Sharjah
FatherSultan III bin Muhammad, Emir of Sharjah
MotherJawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi
OccupationFounder and CEO of Kalimat Group

Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi (Arabic: بدور بنت سلطان بن محمد القاسمي; born 1978)[1][2] is the founder and CEO of children's publisher Kalimat Group, founder and chairperson of Kalimat Foundation,[3] founder and president of the Emirates Publishers Association,[4] founder and patron of the UAE Board on Books for Young People,[5] and president of the International Publishers Association (2021–2023),[6] after being vice president (2019–2021).[7] Her father is Sultan bin Muhammad Al-Qasimi, since 1972 the ruler of the Emirate of Sharjah. In 2014, she was ranked at number 34 by Forbes in its list of 200 Most Powerful Arab Women in Family Business.[8][9]

Career and awards[edit]

Bodour Al Qasimi is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Kalimat Publishing Group, a publisher of children’s books and educational content based in the United Arab Emirates.[10] Al Qasimi is also involved in a number of regional and international initiatives to promote youth and children's empowerment,[11][12] economic development,[13][14] creative industry development,[15][16] and cross-cultural exchange.[17]

Since founding Kalimat Publishing Group in 2007, Al Qasimi has led its growth into a global, multi-imprint publishing and educational technology company with licensing and distribution in 15 countries.[18] The publisher of over 400 titles,[19] Kalimat is recognized as an industry pioneer for books highlighting traditional Arabic culture alongside the modern challenges faced by children as well as Arabic translations of titles which deal with themes that occasionally push socio-cultural boundaries. Kalimat has international partnerships with prominent international publishers, such as Editions Gallimard Jeunesse[20] and Quarto,[21] and has received several international awards for its titles, including in 2016 the Bologna Children’s Book Fair Best Children’s Publisher of the Year award, representing Asia.[22][23]

Kalimat Foundation, a not for profit initiative of Kalimat Group, is involved in promoting literacy, reading culture, and book accessibility, particularly among children who are victim of war and displacement, and who are visually disabled.[24] Kalimat Foundation’s Pledge a Library Initiative has provided books and cooperated on literacy programs globally in countries including Sweden,[25] France, Tunisia, Jordan, India, and Morocco.[26] The Foundation’s Ara Initiative is working to establish accessible book standards for the visually impaired and blind in the Middle East and North Africa,[27] and advance literacy through the provision of accessible books,[28] as such contributing to the UAE’s accession to the Marrakesh Treaty.[29] In February 2020, Ara was shortlisted by the Accessible Books Consortium in its International Excellence Award for Accessible Publishing, under the initiatives category.[30]

Al Qasimi founded the Emirates Publishers Association (EPA) in 2009[31] which became a full International Publishers Association member in 2012.[32] As President of the EPA, she plays a key role in national efforts to transform the publishing industry, which is valued at $281 million,[33] and advocating for sensible industry regulations such as exempting books from valued added tax. Al Qasimi also chairs the Sharjah World Book Capital 2019 Committee.[34]

Al Qasimi was the Founding president of the United Arab Emirates chapter of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY), which promotes literacy, and administers the Sharjah IBBY Children in Crisis Fund.[35] She has called for redefining the principle of freedom to publish[36] in the Arab World and globally in several international conferences and forums such as the Arab Publishers Conference in the United Arab Emirates and Tunisia.[37] To support publishers, authors, and content creators in having their work recognized and protected, Al Qasimi has led discussions with the Ministry of Economy, Emirates Writers Union, and the Emirates Intellectual Property Association on the need to establish a reproduction rights organization and enhance copyright enforcement in the United Arab Emirates.[38]


Bodour Al Qasimi holds a BA (Hons) degree from University of Cambridge, and an MSc in Medical Anthropology from the University College London (UCL).[39]

Personal life[edit]

Bodour Al Qasimi is married to Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, who is also a member of Sharjah's ruling family and was appointed in August 2021 as Deputy Ruler of Sharjah.[40]


  1. ^ "Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi". Her mother's official website.
  2. ^ "Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi" (PDF).
  3. ^ "WIPO and Kalimat Foundation: New Agreement Helps Arabic Children Who are Blind or Visually Impaired". Retrieved 2021-02-24.
  4. ^ "Bodour Al Qasimi re-elected as President of Emirates Publishers Association". sharjah24. Retrieved 17 May 2017.
  5. ^ "About Us – The UAE Board on Books for Young People (UAEBBY)". Retrieved 2021-02-24.
  6. ^ "Al Qasimi and Pansa confirmed as IPA President and Vice President Elect". International Publishers Association. 23 November 2020.
  7. ^ "Shaikha Bodour named vice-president of International Publishers Association". Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  8. ^ "200 Most Powerful Arab Women – 2014: Family Business". forbes middle east. Archived from the original on 2018-06-12. Retrieved 2018-06-11.
  9. ^ (Wam). "Shaikha Bodour in powerful Arab women list by Forbes". Khaleej Times. Retrieved 2018-12-12.
  10. ^ "Gallimard and Kalimat Sign Publishing Collaboration Agreement in Paris". publishing perspectives. Retrieved 23 March 2017.
  11. ^ "Bodour Al Qasimi – مؤسسة كلمات لتمكين الأطفال". Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  12. ^ "Bodour Al Qasimi to Champion Youth Empowerment at World Economic Forum 2015". Global Education Magazine. 2015-08-10. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  13. ^ "Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi attends launch of Sheraa's new co-working hub at AUS". American University of Sharjah. 2016-10-05. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  14. ^ "Bodour Al Qasimi: UAE has become an international destination for entrepreneurs". wam. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  15. ^ "Etisalat Award". Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  16. ^ "Bodour Al Qasimi inaugurates first smart classrooms in Sharjah kindergarten (NEWS)". Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  17. ^ "Sheikha Bodour | Sharjah Update". Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  18. ^ "Kalimat Group - About Us". Retrieved 2021-02-24.
  19. ^ "Kalimat Group - About Us". Retrieved 2021-02-24.
  20. ^ "Gallimard and Kalimat Sign Publishing Collaboration Agreement in Paris". publishing perspectives. Retrieved 23 March 2017.
  21. ^ "Quarto and Kalimat Group collaborate to set up a company to publish Arabic comic books". wam. Retrieved 2021-02-24.
  23. ^ events, Stay up to date with all our. "Kalimat becomes first Emirati publishing house to win Bologna Children's Book Fair Award". Emirates Airline Festival of Literature. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  24. ^ "WIPO and Kalimat Foundation: New Agreement Helps Arabic Children Who are Blind or Visually Impaired". Retrieved 2021-02-24.
  25. ^ "Kalimat Foundation supports Swedish libraries with 2,000 Arabic books". wam. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  26. ^ "Stockholm Librarian Elisabet Risberg on Arabic Books in Sweden". publishing perspectives. Retrieved 27 April 2018.
  27. ^ "Kalimat Foundation's Ara Initiative Helps Sight-Impaired Children Read". publishing perspectives. Retrieved 28 August 2017.
  28. ^ "WIPO and Kalimat Foundation: New Agreement Helps Arabic Children Who are Blind or Visually Impaired". Retrieved 2021-02-24.
  29. ^ "Marrakesh Notification No 3 Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled". wipo. Retrieved 15 October 2014.
  30. ^ "Shortlist announced for the 2020 Accessible Books Consortium International Excellence Award". Retrieved 2021-02-24.
  31. ^ "epa". epa.
  32. ^ "UAE granted membership into international publishing ring". the national. Retrieved 12 October 2012.
  33. ^ "Frankfurt's The Markets: A Snapshot of the United Arab Emirates". publishing perspectives. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  34. ^ "Sharjah named World Book Capital 2019". unesco. Retrieved 26 June 2017.
  35. ^ "IBBY United Arab Emirates". ibby.
  36. ^ "In Sharjah, Calls for Discussion of Redefining Freedom to Publish". publishing perspectives. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  37. ^ "In Sharjah, Calls for Discussion of Redefining Freedom to Publish". publishing perspectives. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  38. ^ "The UAE will place intellectual rights at the very centre". gulf news. Retrieved 8 March 2017.
  39. ^ "Sheikha Al-Qasimi Is the First Arab Woman to Be Appointed VP of the International Publishers Association". About Her. 2018-10-29. Retrieved 2018-12-12.
  40. ^ "Sharjah appoints Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi as new Deputy Ruler". The National. 2021-08-09. Retrieved 2021-12-24.

External links[edit]