Digital Innovation Awards launched to motivate Saudi researchers

Thu, 2021-03-18 04:55

The winners of the first Digital Innovation Awards launched by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) will be announced at an award ceremony on April 25 after the application process closed.

Speaking to Arab News, Ibrahim Al-Nasser, general director of the Digital Innovation Center at the ministry, said the awards aim to encourage digital research and pursue digital patents by motivating researchers and patent holders, and to contribute to developing digital research and business models that can be converted into market opportunities by providing support.

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Five winners in each category will be announced on April 25, and with the prize money for first place set at SR80,000 ($21,000).

“A myriad of services will be delivered to developers of digital research and patents in the form of contributions from the (awards’) partners. There are also opportunities offered by the private and public sectors to adopt the best digital research. All applicants studying at college level or working for accredited research institutions were eligible to apply, provided each team had two members or more, one of them Saudi,” he noted.

For digital research, award organizers required research to be at the university level, dating from no earlier than 2017, to solve existing problems in the market that can be prototyped. As for the digital patent, applicants must provide patents in the field of telecommunications and information technology, must originate from a university or accredited research institute, and should not have been previously commercialized. 

The MCIT offers training programs besides the award in order to enhance the culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in digital research and development.

(Shutterstock illustration image)
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