Innovation Prize for Africa 2015 ($150,000 prize for Innovative African Solutions to African Challenges)

Innovation Prize for Africa 2015

Deadline for Applications: 31 October 2014, 23.59h GMT

The African Innovation Foundation (AIF) is delighted to announce the call for the 2015 Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) applications. The IPA honours and encourages innovative achievements that contribute toward developing new products, increasing efficiency or saving cost in Africa. The prize also promotes among young African men and women the pursuit of science, technology and engineering careers as well as business opportunities with potential of contributing to sustainable development in Africa.

It is important to note that:

The IPA is differentiated from other prizes by assessing both hi-tech versus low-tech innovations and tangible products versus intangible social processes on the same plane. This provides an opportunity for innovators from a wide spectrum of educational and social backgrounds to compete at the same level and the only determining success factor in all instances is how the innovations are assessed on the key indicators set out in the Selection Criteria below.

All innovations are evaluated based on the following criteria:

(1) originality,

(2) marketability,

(3) scalability,

(4) social impact and Scientific/technical aspects.

The IPA is focused on:

  • Mobilizing leaders from all sectors to fuel African innovation
  • Promoting innovation across Africa in key sectors through the competition
  • Promoting science, technology and engineering as a rewarding career path among African youth
  • Encouraging entrepreneurs, innovators, funding bodies and business development service providers to exchange ideas and explore innovative business opportunities.

The IPA anticipates contributing to the following outcomes:

  • Increased commercialization of research and development (R&D) outputs in Africa
  • Increased funding of start-ups, adoption of new and emerging technologies and accelerated growth of an innovative and dynamic private sector; and

Increased economic activity and African led development that results in lasting impact.


The 2015 IPA recognizes innovative breakthroughs that unlock new African potential in the following five priority areas:

  • agriculture and agribusiness;
  • environment, energy and water;
  • health and well-being;
  • ICTs and
  • manufacturing and service industry.


The 2015 IPA will consist of three Prizes, which will be given following the criteria outlined above:

  • First Prize (USD 100.000):
    This prize will be awarded to the innovator with the overall best innovation that meets all the above mentioned IPA criteria and has clear business potential.
  • Second Prize (USD 25,000):
    This prize will be given to the selected innovator with a commercially driven innovation. Beyond the aforementioned five criteria, this category of Award will be carefully assessed on its marketability potential and will be awarded to the innovation with the best commercial/business potential.
  • Special Prize for Social Impact Innovation (USD 25,000):This category of award will be assessed carefully on its particular social impact in the community/country and will be awarded to the innovation with the best social impact.
  • Finalists:The top-10 finalists shall be invited for face-to-face interviews and to the award ceremony. All finalists will receive certificates. In addition, the AIF will also provide in-kind support to each finalist up to a maximum of USD 5,000 in post-prize technical support to assist in moving the innovation to the next step. Media coverage and additional support might also be mobilized for the finalists.


You should consider submitting your application if you are an African entrepreneur, academic or inventor with an innovation that could potentially provide an African solution to some of the continent’s every day challenges. Below are specific guidelines on who can apply and how to apply:

  • Eligible innovations MUST be by Africans for Africa. Africans in the Diaspora can also apply if their innovations are of significance for Africa.
  • A fully completed application form with a full description of the innovation must accompany each submission; otherwise the entry will be disqualified.
  • The innovation description should clearly illustrate the social and/or economic outcome and impact with regard to African development and the priority area chosen, and should be in line with the IPA assessment and selection criteria.
  • Application forms and description of the innovation should be in English, French or Portuguese. While the innovations can be conducted in any language including local languages, the submissions should be translated into English, French or Portuguese.
  • Applicants are required to attach a letter of support/endorsement from an institution or an authority with knowledge of their innovation. This will serve as a testimony of how important the innovation is in addressing development challenges faced by Africans.
  • Each mandatory question on the application form MUST be answered or the application will be deemed incomplete and disqualified.
  • There is no application fee.

 Download Application Form for the 2015 Innovation Prize for Africa

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Innovation Prize for Africa


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