2016 Global Innovation Through Science and Technology (GIST) Tech-I Finalists Announced!

Following a record number of votes, applications, and expert reviews, the U.S. Department of State, GIST initiative, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) are proud to announce the 2016 GIST Tech-I Finalists.

The 2016 GIST Tech-I Finalists representing 24 countries are:


  • Omesmus Emeka, Kenya
  • Nikoloz Gachechiladze, Georgia
  • Layth Hamad, Jordan
  • Saima Hanif, Pakistan
  • Sana Hawasly, Syria
  • Sabina Ismailova, Kazakhstan
  • Ivan Jovanov, Serbia
  • Diego López Olivares, Ecuador
  • Maher Yousef Maymoun, Jordan
  • Musawwir Muhtar, Indonesia
  • Nnenna Chioma Okoye, Nigeria
  • Mary Christine Ong-Reyes, Philippines
  • Samina Sarwat, Bangladesh
  • Leyla Taghizade, Azerbaijan
  • Clarisse Uwineza, Rwanda


  • Levon Aramyan, Armenia
  • Tania Lorena Cabrera Sanzon, Colombia
  • Jorge Daniel Cespedes Vega, Paraguay
  • Yap Chee Wei, Malaysia
  • Hoang Dao, Vietnam
  • Destiny Frederick, Nigeria
  • Amr Hussein Mohamed Hussein, Egypt
  • Ricardo Jaramillo Gaviria, Colombia
  • Yessica López Coyotzi, Mexico
  • Mykhailo Lytovchenko, Ukraine
  • Waqas Muhammad, Pakistan
  • Alexander Pizarro, Peru
  • Samid Razzak, Bangladesh
  • Jigme Tenzin, Bhutan
  • Charity Wanjiku, Kenya

This year the GIST Tech-I Competition received a record 1,075 applications from 104 countries and territories. Over 140 regional, scientific, and entrepreneurship experts from around the world participated in the expert review round of the competition.

Following their assessment of each idea or startup’s technical feasibility, market potential, and significance, 102 impressive innovators from 51 emerging economies emerged as the 2016 GIST Tech-I Semifinalists. From April 1 through May 1, the 102 semifinalists embarked on a huge marketing campaign to advertise their projects and encourage people to vote on the GIST Tech-I Competition.

In total, GIST Tech-I Semifinalists received an amazing 431,655 votes. During the month of voting, semifinalists were recognized by government officials and business leaders and appeared on national and international television, in newspapers, in radio broadcasts, and on Voice of America. Their efforts and the incredible support they received highlight how amazing ideas and hard work can not only benefit an individual, but also a community, a country, a region, and the world as a whole.

  • The thirty GIST Tech-I Finalists (fifteen Idea stage and fifteen Startup stage) will now undergo web-based training prior to flying to Silicon Valley to participate in the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in June.
  • During this internationally prestigious event, these amazing up-and-coming innovators will receive two days of intensive entrepreneurial skills training, mentorship, and networking access to global leaders in their fields.
  • The GIST Tech-I Finals will culminate in an exciting live pitching event to decide who will return home with capital seed prizes to help grow their businesses

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Global Innovation Through Science and Technology (GIST) Tech-I


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