Dr Zeyad Al-Shibaany Wins World Sustainable Development Prize

IEEE UK and Ireland Section Committee Member, Dr Zeyad Al-Shibaany, has been awarded a prize as one of the 25 outstanding young scientists in the world in Sustainable Development.

The Prize is awarded by Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in Germany, and it is a fully funded 3 to 6 months fellowship in one of the leading Universities in Germany.

Zeyad is working on the design and development of a portable medical device that will help prevent the spread of infectious disease. The safest way to contain infectious disease is to make sure that those who are infected do not mix with the healthy population. Currently however, to be diagnosed, sick people, especially in poorer communities, often need to travel long distances to see a medical professional. This brings them into contact with a great deal of vulnerable people. In order to circumvent this potentially dangerous scenario, Zeyad has developed a prototype medical device that people can use in their own homes to test for infectious disease. Results can then be sent to a hospital, where their data can be logged.

Zeyad is carrying out this product development parallel to other complementary projects, all with the aim of encouraging sustainable development. For example, he has identified local resistance as a barrier against some large scale Clean Development Mechanism projects. In order to combat this, he has developed a training programme to educate communities in the form of seminars, webinars and local visits. Zeyad has also implemented a certified training course in which he teaches trainees the technical skills they need to achieve sustainability in their profession.

Zeyad has displayed a long-term commitment to achieving the wider Sustainable Development Goals. He has worked in leadership positions in NGOs supporting green development, especially the management of the transition to green and sustainable energy, and has obtained certificates in sustainability management from some of the world’s leading academic institutions. He has also received awards from Newcastle University for his role in promoting gender equality in science and engineering.

The jury was impressed by the ambition and far reach of Zeyad’s project and is eager to see the medical device in use in rural communities, throughout the world. They believe that, through Green Talents, he will get a chance to extend his accomplishments in collaboration with researchers and scientists from other disciplines in order to achieve his professional goals.