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2018 Africa Prize for Engineers with Engineering Innovation (£25,000 Star Prize)



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Deadline: July 23 2018, 4Pm GMT

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The Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation aims to stimulate and reward engineering entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan Africa. The Africa Prize encourages ambitious and talented sub-Saharan African engineering innovators from all disciplines to apply their skills to develop scalable solutions to local challenges, highlighting the importance of engineering as an enabler of improved quality of life and economic development. Crucial commercialisation support is awarded to a shortlist of innovative applicants, through an eight-month period of training and mentoring.

The Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation is an initiative of the Royal Academy of Engineering. It is generously supported by the Shell Centenary Scholarship Fund and the Global Challenges Research Fund.

You do not need to be an engineer to enter the Prize, provided your innovation involves and is anchored in engineering.


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Applicants are very welcome to submit more than one proposal per round.

What is the prize?

  • The overall winner receives £25,000 (or local currency equivalent).
  • Three runners-up also receive a cash prize of £10,000 each.

The Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation is designed to:

  • Support the commercial development of engineering innovations that have a positive impact on social and economic development in the region
  • Inspire and enthuse young people in Africa and the UK about engineering
  • Raise the profile of engineering and innovation in Africa
  • Highlight the role of engineering in tackling development challenges to an international audience ranging from school children to policymakers
  • Bring together stakeholders from the UK and African business and innovation communities to establish a closer dialogue on African and global engineering issues


  • Applicants must be individuals or small groups.
  • Individual applicants must be citizens of a country within sub-Saharan Africa. For teams of two or more, the lead applicant must be a citizen of a country within sub-Saharan Africa.
  • The innovation must be based in a country in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Applicants must have an engineering innovation, though are not required to be an engineering graduate or student.
  • Applicants must provide a letter of support from a university or research institution, this can be as simple as stating an individual studied at that institution. If applicants are not affiliated with a university, another document proving the status of your organisation or innovation, such as a document of incorporation or similar, can be used.
  • Industrial researchers and establishments are not eligible.
  • The lead applicant must be over the age of 18. There is no upper age limit.
  • The applicant’s innovation can be any new product, technology or service, based on research in engineering defined in its broadest sense to encompass a wide range of fields, including: agricultural technology, biotechnology, chemical engineering, civil engineering, computer science, design engineering, electrical and electronic engineering, ICT, materials science, mechanical engineering, and medical engineering. If you are in any doubt that your area of expertise would be considered engineering, then please contact the Academy to discuss your application.
  • Applicants should have achieved the development of, and be in the early stages of commercialising, an engineering innovation that:

1. Will bring social and/or environmental benefits to a country/countries in sub-Saharan Africa
2. Has strong potential to be replicated and scaled up
3. Is accompanied by an ambitious but realistic business plan which has strong commercial viability

Click here to apply
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