Sir Syed University of Engineering & Technology (SSUET), ASPIRE Pakistan, IdeaGist and The Ministry of Information Technology & Telecommunication (MoITT) jointly organized an online event to launch “Call for Ideas for the National Idea Bank (NIB) Competition 2022″ that was attended by the NIB partners, stakeholders, businessmen, entrepreneurs and vice-chancellors of different universities of Pakistan.

Chief Guest, Dr Amjad Saqib, Founder of Akhuwat Foundation, encouraged young innovators to think outside the box and look at everyday challenges as opportunities to solve. “All innovators and entrepreneurs are invited to submit their ideas to the NIB competition for recognition, support, mentorship, cash prizes, and access to investors. If the submitted idea were found feasible, we would make it saleable in the market after polishing. Innovation and emerging technologies together can open up new vistas of development and prosperity for Pakistan,” he added.

Addressing the event, Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Vali Uddin said that the National Idea Bank (NIB) project is reflective of the commitment and resolve of Sir Syed University to expand in terms of networking, aiming to promote new knowledge and technology so that our beloved country Pakistan may prosper and gain a dignified place among the community of developed nations. The great success of NIB 2021 was a combined team effort of NIB, including the core partners Aspire Pakistan, IdeaGist, SSUET, Ignite and PSEB. During the execution of the program, our team has grown to a significant size. There were national and international members continuously joining the NIB program.

Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Vali Uddin pointed out that Sir Syed University has established Sir Syed Technology Incubation Center at the University so as to have collaboration with Industry and to develop the technology created new products into a marketable item. The University has received several Erasmus+ (EU) International Credit Mobility funding programs in collaboration with national and other European Universities. The University participated in the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) Competition, in which the University’s two projects were financially awarded and were taken to Silicon Valley USA for final round. More importantly, the National Idea Bank project has successfully been handled by the university in collaboration with Ministry of IT and Telecommunication and the ASPIRE. It would not be out of place to mention here that owing to the university’s enabling environment and state of the art facilities the Government of Pakistan also selected Sir Syed University to run the coveted “Kamyab Jawan Program”.

An informative presentation was given highlighting the journey of NIB through clips and video. Mr Azam Arastu presented NIB 2022 plan. In the end Call for Ideas for NIB 2022 was announced open.

Earlier Founder of the National Idea Bank, Hassan Syed, welcomed the guests, and thanked all partners, especially the National Host Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology for their leadership role in the NIB.

National Idea Bank 2021 has been concluded with great success. It had over 14,000 registrations and collected over 2000 ideas from the first call of ideas for NIB 2021. For judgement and assessment of the ideas, around 300 reputable judges were brought in a diverse pool from industry, academia, and government, covering all target sectors, with over 25% women representation. NIB 2022 is being launched after the great success of NIB 2021. NIB organized city host competitions and provincial competitions in 12 cities and 4 provinces respectively. In the national competition, there were 18 winners who are now being given short training and interactions with the Venture Capitalists.

Related: Road to Success, lecture at SSUET by Dr Pirzada Qasim

Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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