Elevating Filipino Ingenuity
BY RAGIE MAE TAÑO-ARELLANO
Switzerland, a country renowned for its steadfast commitment to excellence and pioneering innovations, recently honored emerging Filipino inventors at the Swiss Innovation Prize Competition 2023 through its embassy in the Philippines. The awarding ceremony was held at the Makati Diamond Residences last November 24.
Students, researchers, business owners, and start-ups from the Philippines with creative ideas or projects that could further societal advancement and economic development joined the competition. Out of the more than 150 submissions received from across the country, the Embassy Screening Committee chose the finalists for the digitalization, prosperity, and innovation categories.
The Swiss Innovation Prize Competition 2023 is a platform for the exchange of ideas, introducing young Filipino innovators to cutting-edge solutions from Swiss companies. The competition, according to Switzerland’s Ambassador to the Philippines Nicolas Brühl, is a testament to Switzerland’s belief in the power of fresh ideas for economic growth and societal advancement, which reminded him of the enduring spirit of innovation that Switzerland is renowned for. “The objective of promoting a culture of innovation here is not just the exchange of knowledge, but winning innovations and aspirations from both our nations," he stressed.
The participants were challenged to think holistically, ensuring that their innovations stand as testaments to creativity, feasibility, and a commitment to lasting positive change. Their works were evaluated based not only on the ability to solve problems but also to contribute to the overall development of society and the economy. The innovations were also judged to see if they could really be useful and put into action in a reasonable amount of time and money. The participants were encouraged to think of sustainable solutions that would have long-lasting positive effects on the ecosystem as a whole.
The winners thanked the Swiss Embassy for the opportunity to take part in the competition because it served as a platform for them to share their ideas and showcase that Filipinos are not only adept at innovations, but are sincerely dedicated to propelling change on a global scale. As young innovators, they feel empowered to contribute to stories that highlight the Philippines as a hub of creative brilliance and a force to be reckoned with in the global innovation landscape.
The judges of the competition were representatives from different Swiss companies. They believe that the concepts presented by the young innovators have the potential to redefine industries and contribute significantly to societal progress.
Through the Swiss Innovation Prize Competition, Switzerland and the Philippines will continue to amplify and elevate the spirit of Filipino innovation that will spur creativity and originality in addressing societal challenges and propel the nation toward economic growth.