UAE becomes global platform for employing future technologies in service of humanity

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  • Award affirms Mohammed bin Rashid’s vision to establish concept of innovation in various sectors
  • The second edition of the Award gains momentum as one of the most popular technology podiums in the world
  • Humanitarian Aid category leads with 17.2% entries, followed by Environment with 13.2% entries
  • US, UAE, UK, Saudi Arabia, Spain, India, Australia, Canada and South Korea constitute top countries with maximum number of entries
  • Remarkable participation from outstanding international universities such as Harvard, MIT, Oxford, London Business School, RMIT, University of Toronto and Seoul National University.
  • Drones global market will reach $16.1 billion by 2021

The UAE has become a global platform for the use of future technology for peaceful purposes and employing them in the service of humanity, stated His Excellency Mohammed Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs and Chairman of the Organising Committee of the UAE Drones for Good Award.

“The Award affirms the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to establish the concept of innovation in various sectors by exploring future technological developments and employing them in the service of humanity,” H.E. Al Gergawi said.

H.E. Al Gergawi stated this as the UAE Drones for Good Award announced that it has received 1017 participations from 165 countries for the second edition of the Award. The majority of the nominations were received in the Humanitarian Aid category with 17.2% entries, followed by Environment with 13.2% entries as the nomination period came to a close on November 1st.

“The UAE Drones for Good Award and other innovative initiatives have reinforced the UAE’s position as an international destination for advanced technological innovations. The Award has become a global platform to showcase the latest innovations in this field,” H.E. Al Gergawi added.

H.E. Al Gergawi pointed out that the award has gained considerable momentum in its second edition, creating an opportunity for international level competition among developers of this technology such as innovators, manufacturers, entrepreneurs as well as scientific research centres, universities and international academic institutions.  

“The Award has given a new dimension to the concept of drones technology, and contributed to shaping an active economic sector that will have a major role in the global economy,” H.E. Al Gergawi said.

The vision of the Award is based on international reports that show that the value of drones market in the world will reach $16.1 billion by 2021, with a growth of 5.5% per annum, especially in the environment and logistics sectors. Drones have also been shown to have huge potential in urban planning 3D imaging technology in addition to areas such as disaster response and projects in various economic sectors such as oil & gas, electricity and construction.

H.E. Al Gergawi urged UAE university students to participate in the Award as a model for the future generation, and said the government is offering an incubator environment for innovators to harness technology to make lives easier for people in the UAE and the world.

Global platform for employing innovation to serve humanity

Saif Al-Aleeli, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Museum of the Future Foundation and Coordinator General of the UAE Drones for Good Award, said the significant increase in the global participation in the second edition of the Award confirms the leadership of the UAE in employing advanced technologies in various sectors.

Emphasising the role of the Award as a global platform to make use of innovation to serve humanity, Al-Aleeli said: “The numbers of submissions this year have increased by 27% compared to the first edition, and the numbers of participating countries have increased by 189%.”

Al-Aleeli said that the UAE Drones for Good Award attracted 1017 entries from 165 countries as follows:  Civil Defence 10.80%, Construction 5.60%, Economy 3.20%, Education 2%, Environment 13.20%, Health 11.20%, Humanitarian Aid 17.20%, Logistics 6.80%, Social Services 1.60%, Tourism 1.60%, Transport 7.60% and Others 18.80%.

The United States, the UAE, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Spain, India, Australia, Canada and South Korea are the top countries with the maximum number of entries for the second edition of the award. Remarkable participation has also been witnessed from outstanding international universities such as Harvard, MIT, Oxford, London Business School, RMIT, Seoul National University, University of Toronto, Georgia Institute of Technology, Merton College as well as King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia, UAE University and Khalifa University in the UAE.

The Organising Committee will soon announce the names of 10 applicants from each category who will be eligible to participate in the semi-finals of the International and National competitions. At this stage, the selected participants will get the opportunity to demonstrate their ideas in front of the panel of judges, which includes high-profile experts and specialists in drones technologies

The main categories of the award include, but are not limit to: Environment, Education, Logistics, Transport, Construction & Infrastructure, Healthcare, Civil Defence, Tourism, Social Services, Economic Development, Humanitarian Aid & Disaster Relief.

UAE citizens and residents may choose to participate in either the National Competition or the International Competition, while contestants who are not UAE citizens or residents are eligible to participate only in the International Competition.

The International Competition offers US$ 1 million in prize money while the National Competition offers AED 1 million.  The winners will be honoured at a special ceremony in February 2016 before the 4th Government Summit.

The panel of judges will evaluate applicants through several stages, focusing on safe, effective, economical, sufficient and positive impact on human life.