Second HCT/Wharton Innovation Tournament opens
- United Arab Emirates: Thursday, March 07 - 2013 at 10:10
- PRESS RELEASE
Aspiring innovators, entrepreneurs and trailblazers will have the opportunity to implement their ideas on a global scale with the launch of the second Innovation Tournament 2021. The Tournament will be hosted jointly by Arabic Knowledge@Wharton, the MENA edition of the online research and business analysis journal published by the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School, and the Higher Colleges of Technology(HCT), the UAE's largest higher education institution.
The winners will also receive project funding.
Inspired by, and based on, the acclaimed book Innovation Tournaments: Creating and Selecting Exceptional Opportunities, by Wharton Professors Christian Terwiesch and Karl Ulrich, the tournament is designed to encourage and nurture innovators' concepts that have the potential to be implemented worldwide.
The concept of social impact can cover a broad spectrum of ideas, including economic opportunity for historically disadvantaged; positive impact on the natural environment; increased access to education and health services; addressing basic needs in water, nutrition, shelter, safety, health, and sanitation and improving life in cities.
There is no entry fee and contestants can submit their innovative concepts online.From the applicants, a panel of experts will select the semi-finalists from around the globe, who will then be invited to submit a web-based presentation of their innovative concepts.
From this group the judges will select finalists, who will be invited to present their ideas before a panel of judges in May 2013 in the UAE.
Professor Ulrich, Vice Dean of Innovation and the CIBC Professor of Entrepreneurship and e-Commerce at the Wharton School said the Wharton-HCT innovation tournament would combine individual creativity with structured processes to generate, create, recognize, and develop exceptional opportunities.
"Everyone uses tournaments in everyday life. They are used in society. They are used in organizations. We have collaborated to create a tournament from which new ideas will emerge that can help communities to be better places to live, as well as helping individuals. This free competition promises excitement and original ideas," he said.
Professor Ulrich added that such a tournament can serve as a mechanism for "jump starting" the creative process.
"We're 'crowd sourcing' from the very best minds in business and in the academic world, from any field that
can have a positive social impact," he said.
Dr Tayeb Kamali, Vice Chancellor of the Higher Colleges of Technology, said the Tournament would challenge and empower applicants through the innovative use of technologies, and reinforce the UAE's reputation as a hub for innovation and technology transfer.
Dr Kamali added that the inspiration for the Tournament title came from the Vision 2021 Plan that is designed to reinforce the UAE standing as one of the best countries in the world by 2021.
"We are very pleased to be associated with the Innovation Tournament 2021 as it is very much in alignment with the UAE Government's Vision 2021 Plan, which states that 'knowledgeable and innovative Emiratis will confidently build a competitive and resilient economy' which has economic diversification at its core," Dr Kamali said.
"The Vision 2021 Plan envisages the UAE's economy will be 'a model where growth is driven by knowledge and innovation' and this Tournament will be an exciting avenue by which to achieve those goals,"he added.
"The Higher Colleges of Technology has a strong emphases on innovation and technology in training and education, ensuring theirstudents have the knowledge, skills, confidence and values to make important contributions to the United Arab Emirates and succeed in a changing world. We look forward to receiving many interesting and challenging entries from our students at HCT, from the UAE and the region," Dr Kamali said.
The Innovation Tournament is designed to identify novel and innovative "tools" that communities and individuals can use to increase their social impact, productivity, profitability and longevity. Under the Tournament rules, a "tool" is defined as a method, approach, template, process or software that meets the relevant industry criteria.
The competition will take place in three phases. Phase I involves the actual submission of the tools, which will then be judged by the panel of experts. Phase II will be the semi-final stage of the Tournament, during which a number of enterprising entrants will be chosen to present information on their tools. A short-list of these Phase II semi-finalists will be selected through a voting system and who will have the unique opportunity to be mentored by Wharton alumni/business owners, faculty and other Wharton and HCT colleagues.
Phase III is the finalists stage and will require each finalist to make a presentation at a live event, where a panel of judges will select the winners. The judges will include faculty &members from the Higher Colleges of Technology, The Wharton School and business experts from around the world.
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