Africa: Young Innovators Win Video Competition With Ideas for a Better Future

Marking World Intellectual Property Day, on Tuesday, UN patent experts announced the champions of this year’s youth video competition.

Selected among 142 entries from 63 countries, the top three winners come from Syria, Ghana, and China, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) winners sent the message globally that young people are stepping up to innovation challenges, using their energy and creativity to steer a course towards a better future.

Smart devices, rice threshers and pictograms

Twenty-five-year-old Hekma Jabouli from Syria won the first prize with her short film showing a home-made smart device designed to help her sister regain mobility after shrapnel injured her spinal cord.

Twenty-seven-year-old John Wobil from Ghana took second place for his video about a new rice thresher, while digital designers Li Binglu and Cai Quinge, Chinese nationals living in Japan, came in third with their story about creating new pictograms or emojis to forge connections among remote workers.

Youth’s innovation potential

Underscoring the fact that half the world’s population is under the age of 30 and the fastest-growing demographic in many parts of the world, WIPO Director General Daren Tangsaid that “younger people are already working on solutions to shared issues, supported by IP [intellectual property] rights like trademarks, patents, designs, copyright, and others that help people earn a living from their work”.

Furthermore, he said “at a time when humanity needs to come together to address a range of urgent challenges – from overcoming the pandemic, to combatting climate change – we must help our youths to realize their innovation potential”.