Emirates NBD collaborates with Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation and announces winners for its ‘Project Design Space’ challenge

Emirates NBD collaborates with Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation and announces winners for its ‘Project Design Space’ challenge

3 Min | 20 June 2024
  • Young innovators tackle real-world challenges in the UAE’s largest design competition for high school students

Dubai, UAE, 20 June 2024: Emirates NBD, a leading banking group in the MENAT (Middle East, North Africa, and Türkiye) region, proudly announces the winners of its challenge in the 2024 Project Design Space (PDS). This initiative, in collaboration with Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation (DIDI), underscores Emirates NBD’s commitment to championing innovation and cultivating the next generation of regional talent by unlocking their potential in creative problem-solving within the financial services domain.

Recognised as the UAE’s largest design competition for high school students, PDS offers a dynamic learning platform for young innovators to gain practical experience by solving real-life design challenges posed by industry leaders. This year, Emirates NBD collaborated with DIDI to elevate design thinking and explore innovative user experience (UX) solutions that inspire and empower customers to achieve their goals. The competition brought together aspiring student designers under the Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge’s (ADEK) RizeUp programme and young creatives at Bon Education, an educational consultancy and programme design studio, challenging them to design prototypes of banking solutions utilising AI technologies to deliver seamless customer experiences.

2024 Project Design Space – Emirates NBD Challenge Winners

  • Gold Category: Aisha Bint Abi Baker School
    AI-powered financial education app to empower users to achieve their financial goals.
  • Silver Category: Abu Dhabi Indian School
    Financial wellbeing-focused app tracking financial targets with budgeting and debt management.
  • Most Innovative: Applied Technology Schools

TBMECA user-friendly, in-built rewards system for savings incentivised with personalised gift cards integrated into the existing ENBD X mobile banking app.

Saud Al Dhawyani, Group Chief Platforms Officer at Emirates NBD, said: “As a leading financial services brand, Emirates NBD is dedicated to shaping the future of banking and helping customers achieve their goals by providing innovative and empowering digital banking solutions. Our participation in DIDI’s Project Design Space resonates with our overarching mission to nurture promising students by giving them a platform to advance their skills in developing innovative tech solutions for real-life challenges. We are immensely proud of the young changemakers in Abu Dhabi whose groundbreaking AI concepts and bold ideas will drive positive change for Emirates NBD’s customers and stakeholders.”

Hani Asfour, Vice President, Innovation and Institutional Partnerships at the Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation, said: “Skilled, solution-oriented designers are needed on the frontlines as we shape a digital, inclusive and sustainable future for all. DIDI’s partnership with Emirates NBD for this year’s Project Design Space helps bridge academia and the private sector, ensuring students can benefit from the guidance, insights and experiences of industry giants. By doing so, we equip youth at an early stage to collaborate, think innovatively and develop viable, impactful solutions for real-world challenges that will benefit their careers and empower the world with experienced innovators, creators and entrepreneurs.” 

The 2024 edition of PDS, spanning from January to May, engaged over 350 students from Abu Dhabi schools recruited by DIDI. Participants tackled challenges set forth by
Emirates NBD, LG and TAQA, with Emirates NBD focusing on AI-powered solutions that empower customers to achieve their goals. The students received specialised training and guidance on designing innovative solutions to meet the needs of Emirates NBD’s customers. Each team delivered a three-minute video pitch demonstrating their working prototype, key research findings influencing the design, and how their design enhances the customer journey and user experience. The top eight teams, recognised for their design thinking, collaboration and innovation, advanced to a virtual boot camp and presented their final prototypes before a panel of judges from Emirates NBD, LG and TAQA.


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