Supporting high-potential innovation from academia

2023 Highlights video

2023 Programme Highlights

Between November 28th and December 2nd 2023, we brought together professors and students from 92 universities across 46 countries in Dubai for our yearly edition of Prototypes for Humanity. As the world turned its attention to COP28 and the discussions on its agenda, our community presented innovation-backed solutions to accelerate real change, engaging with industry leaders, government and corporate partners, investors, and academic peers.

  • The Showcase

    The 100 projects featured in the 2023 edition reflected how bright minds from universities around the world, in the fields of natural sciences, humanities, technology, and creative studies, produce tangible solutions in areas ranging from emissions reduction to biomaterials, from extreme events to data-enabled healthcare.  Learn more about the 100 projects featured in the 2023 edition here.

  • The Awards

    On December 2nd at COP28, a total of $100,000 in cash awards was presented to the best projects in five priority areas on this year’s COP agenda: Nature, Health, Energy, Communities and AI. The Awards prizes seek to support continued research in critical areas, awarding the students and professors working towards exceptional solutions. Learn more about the winning projects here.

  • Venture-building Workshops and Industry Roundtables

    The initial phase of a year-long programme designed to support academic entrepreneurs, the venture-building workshops gathered 30 international experts in the fields of ventures, innovation, and investments to support projects towards implementation. Each participating projects had the opportunity to present their technologies and learn more about the key building blocks of startups’ development journeys, including:

    • Product Roadmap and Technology Development
    • Legal and IP
    • Growth and Revenue
    • Sustainability best-practices
    • Go-to-market strategies

    The workshops were complemented by industry-specific roundtables over the subsequent days, which connected our community with international innovation and investment leaders in the fields of healthcare, construction, energy, consumer goods, agriculture, and water.

    Selected participants from the programme will enter a programme of further training, mentorship, and support towards market launch, working alongside venture experts and industry partners.

  • Professors Collaboration discussions

    On November 29th and 30th, over 60 participating professors, from leading global research institutions alongside top universities in developing economies, engaged in a forum exploring the opportunities, challenges and necessary supporting mechanisms to enable collaborative research. The discussions also looked at identifying areas where professors’ research interests converge, and how to utilise the Prototypes for Humanity platform to enable joint work.

    The final discussions and debrief took place at COP28 Impact Hub on December 2nd, also establishing the direction for the programme throughout 2024, to which the broader Prototypes for Humanity professors’ community are invited to join.