MIT Technology Review Arabia launches the fifth edition of the global “Innovators Under 35 MENA” Awards

After the success of the previous four editions, MIT Technology Review Arabia, a Majarra website, has opened nominations for the fifth edition of the Innovators Under 35 MENA awards.


You can nominate yourself, a friend, or a colleague via the link:



What are the “Innovators Under 35” Award?

MIT Technology Review Arabia organizes Innovators Under 35 MENA Awards annually. The first edition for the region was launched in 2018, while the global one was launched by MIT Technology Review in Boston in 1999. The list has historically included some global tech pioneers like Mark Zuckerburg and Sergey Brin.


The Award composes a list of the most distinguished and accomplished innovators worldwide under the age of 35 and intends to recognize their efforts and great work. Innovators Under 35 MENA includes the brightest minds among tech experts, researchers, and scientists covering a wide range of fields, and creating real change in our societies.


Nomination Criteria:

Anyone undertaking a technological innovation project or engaging in practical research may nominate themselves for the award. The categories for the Award include medicine, biomedicine, genetics, computing, communications, energy, material science, programming, transportation, Internet applications, and artificial intelligence.


It must be noted that the nominee may not be older than 35 years old as of October 1, 2022, and must be a citizen or active resident (which includes student visas) in one of the MENA nations, in addition to anyone of Arab descent residing anywhere in the world.


The judging panel is composed of distinguished, and independent individuals with great experience in the fields of technology, AI, biology, medicine, cybersecurity, and entrepreneurship. Some are even previous winners of the Award, as well as investors and academics from various leading universities and companies worldwide.


Previous winners:

Since its launch in 2018, 55 innovators have been selected by MIT TechnologyReview Arabia and Majarra, coming from various countries such as the UAE, KSA, Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Egypt, Kuwait, Tunisia, Oman, and others. The list brings together the brightest researchers, experts, scientists, and innovators whose inventions and achievements have had a major impact on the various vital fields covered by the Award.


It is worth noting that three of the 2019 IU35 MENA winners have gone on to win the global Award in 2020: Emirati Ghena Alhenaee won for her work on an integrated framework for energy and water resource management in the Middle East; Palestinian Omar Abudayyeh won for his work on novel CRISPR systems that can better perform gene editing and molecular diagnostics; and Tunisian Mohamed Dhaouafi won for affordable 3D printed, bionic and customizable prosthetics for children and youth.


A number of the winners have expressed how the Award helped connect a number of parties that have made practical use of the winning ideas. IU 35 2020 winner Ghada Zamzmi stated that: “after receiving the award, a number of hospitals within the Arab world expressed their interest in my technology, hoping to provide material support for its development and inclusion in pediatric ICUs throughout the region.”


IU35 2019 winner Laila Ziko stated: “I feel proud and honored to have been chosen as an IU35 winner, and I encourage scientists and entrepreneurs at the beginning of their professional lives to nominate each other as a motivator to work towards solving the world’s various challenges in different fields, moving the world in a better direction for all aspects of life.”


Mohamed Dhaouafi stated that: “joining the IU35 community has been a true honor; a globally recognized award bringing together the best in the scientific and tech fields. It has truly extended my reach and cemented my credibility.”