My days at the UNLEASH Innovation Program were truly mind blowing! I formed a team with two amazing colleagues, received two awards, and pitched our global health idea towards achieving United Nations’ Sustainable development goals in front of 1’000 guests, including Crown Princess Mary of Denmark. Our idea is to use artificial intelligence and machine learning for early detection of colorectal cancer.
UNLEASH- Innovation Lab to address the SDGs
I was selected from over 10,000 applicants from 165+ countries to participate in UNLEASH. UNLEASH is an unique innovation lab to develop innovative and scalable solutions that address the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in collaboration with other talents, companies, research institutions, investors, non-profit organisations and government agencies. This global lab and platform is fully dedicated to the Sustainable Development Goals, where talents can add value directly and access an unique eco-system of corporations, think-thanks, foundations, non-profits, angel investors, etc.
What are the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were agreed upon in 2015 by all UN member states and consist of 17 goals and 169 targets for the world to become a better place by 2030.
Bronze Medal for Our Idea
The teams were split into 7 themes – water, food, energy, sustainable consumption and production, education, urban sustainability, and health. The innovation process from problem framing to ideation to implementation was led by Deloitte Monitor and experts from all over the world.
I was in the health track and teamed up with a cancer biologist from UC Berkeley and a senior manager at Deloitte. We combined our skills to develop “Dearly”, a home-based platform that serves to early detect colorectal cancer.
My heart was beating so hard when I took the stage. Presenting in front of an audience that includes: the Danish Crown Princess Mary; the Prime Minister of Denmark – Lars Løkke Rasmussen; Under Secretary General of UNDP – Achim Steiner; CEO, Microsoft Development – Charlotte Mark; Founder & CEO, Khan Academy – Salman Khan; CEO, Deloitte DK – Anders Dons; and Artist – Olafur Eliasson was tough enough, but then I looked over and saw famous Actor and philanthropist – Ashton Kutcher.
Our idea emerged third among more than 35 ideas in the health track, and we walked away with a bronze medal! We also won the “most compelling communication” award among 200 teams and were invited to present our solution on stage during the closing ceremony in front of 1,000 esteemed guests.
I even made it into the Danish National TV!
It has been a blast and a deeply humbling experience to be part of this group of Global Talents. We are in the process of implementing our solution and the best is yet to come!
(Photos credit: Alex Luka Ladime & Astrid Maria Rasmussen)
He also became the youngest ambassador for the Next Einstein Forum (NEF), and participated in an event bringing together heads of state, leading organizations, and Africa’s promising thinkers. He partnered with a NEF fellow in bringing the benefits of their project MOVAAR (Making Our Visions and Aspirations Reality) to Gambia to identify and aid community change-makers, offering informed guidance by entrepreneurs and other professionals who have transformed the lives of fellow citizens.
He also represented Dr. Wendelin Werner (Fields Medal winner and Professor at ETH Zurich) during the plenary of NEF Forum which was broadcasted live in BBC and Senegal TV.