UNLEASH INNOVATION LAB TO BE HELD IN RWANDA IN DECEMBER 2023
Today, Rwandan Honorable Minister of ICT and Innovation, Ms. Paula Ingabire, and Chairperson of UNLEASH, Prof. Flemming Besenbacher, revealed that the next UNLEASH Innovation Lab will take place in Rwanda, tentatively from December 2 to December 8.
Rwanda will host the first UNLEASH Innovation Lab held in Africa. Rwanda’s mission to advance youth-led innovation, combined with its growing entrepreneurial spirit and its leading position as an international conference hub makes it the perfect host.
“The intersection between Technology, Youth and Sustainability is critical. And Rwanda shares UNLEASH’s vision to leverage these fronts to address SDGs. This is also a unique opportunity for youth around the world to tap into our start-up ecosystem, whilst benefitting from the instruments Rwanda has put in place to position itself as a testbed for innovators before expanding to the rest of the continent,” says Honorable Minister of ICT and Innovation, Ms. Paula Ingabire.
UNLEASH equips young people from all around the world to gain the skills, tools and networks to succeed at becoming the next generation of leaders that put sustainability, equity, and inclusion at the center of their decision-making.
The first UNLEASH Innovation Lab took place in Denmark in 2017, followed by Singapore (2018), China (2019), Greenland (2022), and India (2022). Each edition was anchored in the local context and addressed the SDGs most relevant to the host country and the region. UNLEASH Rwanda will harness Kigali’s innovation ecosystem and focus on developing solutions for education, health, sustainable cities and communities, as well as decent work and economic growth, amongst other SDG-related themes.
The Innovation Lab is made possible with the support of BESTSELLER Foundation, which has been part of UNLEASH’s journey since its inception. “Youth and innovation are cornerstones of designing a sustainable future, and we are proud to continuously support a platform such as UNLEASH, which will not only contribute to the global efforts towards achieving the SDGs but also advance innovation and entrepreneurship in Rwanda and beyond,” says Anders Holch Povlsen, CEO and Owner, BESTSELLER.
“We are thrilled to bring the UNLEASH movement to a new continent, and, as a prominent hub for innovation and entrepreneurship in the heart of Africa, Kigali is the perfect location for young Talents to redefine what the future of the planet looks like. Ever since we started our discussions in Rwanda, local organizations have received us with open arms, and Clare Akamanzi, CEO of Rwanda Development Board has been instrumental to make UNLEASH Rwanda a reality,” says Chairperson of UNLEASH, Prof. Flemming Besenbacher.
The UNLEASH Innovation Lab in Rwanda will welcome young and passionate individuals aged 18-35 from all around the world who want to make positive impact. Applications for the Lab will open at the end of June.