March 2nd, 2020, Abu Dhabi (UAE): The Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) has announced its support for Innovate4Good (I4G), a purpose-driven startup community platform and thought leadership forum committed to accelerating social innovation and transformational entrepreneurship in the MENA region and beyond.
As part of its involvement, MOCCAE intends to work with I4G strategic and community partners to help translate the transformative ideas of young innovators and startups into sustainable impact.
Taif Al Amiri, Director of Government Communication Department at MOCCAE, said: “Young people are major influencers in the global drive towards sustainability. When they are empowered, their contribution can be a game changer. Recognizing this fact, the UAE has created an environment that equips the young generation with the tools to tackle the responsibilities ahead. In this context, we are pleased to support I4G that encourages youth to actively pursue green entrepreneurship and innovate for the greater good of our planet.”
Ara Fernezian, Founder and CEO of I4G, said: “We are proud to welcome MOCCAE as a strategic partner of I4G. As the government entity mandated to address the impact of climate change and protect the country’s environment, the Ministry will assist us in leveraging the innovation ecosystem to facilitate effective solutions to global environmental sustainability challenges.”
Founded by Stratecis and powered by Catalyst, a Masdar-BP initiative, with the principal partnership of Abu Dhabi Digital Authority, I4G will host its inaugural annual community meeting at Abu Dhabi Youth Hub and at Tech Park in Masdar City from March 30 to 31, 2020, in collaboration with APCO Worldwide. The gathering will draw the participation of 26 shortlisted technology and social startups and 40 incubators, accelerators and academic institutions from the UAE, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, Tunisia, Morocco, Egypt, Armenia, Georgia, Scotland and the USA.
I4G aims to connect technology and social entrepreneurs with resources – including funding, expertise, business ideas, customers and supporters – to foster innovation and develop solutions to pressing global issues.
Fernezian added: “With the support of our partners, we are confident that I4G will create new opportunities for social entrepreneurship, and complement the efforts of investors and startups in implementing initiatives on ground. This, in turn, will enhance the economic, environmental and social well-being of our communities.”
I4G focuses on key pressing issues affecting the world, such as circular economy & resource scarcity, mental health, healthcare, access to education and digital inclusion. Its growing online community currently includes 500 members, from startups and young innovators to accelerators and incubators, investors, government departments, media organizations, corporations, and academia.
To nurture young talent and promote youth leadership in social and environmental innovation, I4G also offers mentorship programs and workshops on innovation and entrepreneurship, and facilitates meetings between startups and potential investors and partners to explore opportunities for collaboration.
Themed ‘Transforming Lives Through Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship’, the initiative assists startups in scaling their social enterprises, and empowers young people from the Arab world and beyond to harness the power of technology for the benefit of society, the planet and the economy.
A key highlight of the forum – the ChangeMakers Innovation Challenge – is set to convene 30 innovators, who will pitch their ventures to investors and potential partners from government departments, incubators, accelerators and corporations.
A leadership conference will also feature on the agenda. Key topics will include “Bridging the tradeoff between capitalism and social impact to drive transformational change for shared prosperity”, “The rise of social innovation and entrepreneurship in the MENA Region”, “Leveraging artificial intelligence and modern technology to improve lives”, and “How to balance profit and purpose for a greater impact”.