• Partially Funded

The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), through its Subregional office for Southern Africa (SRO-SA), is partnering with the African Youth SDG Summit and AfriLabs to showcase the innovation potential of young African entrepreneurs. The award aims to recognize and reward outstanding young entrepreneurial efforts, that have successfully developed an innovation to resolve a specific development problem for firms, governments, households and communities and with an impact on the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The winners will be assessed in the following way:

In a first round, applicants will be assessed by a jury composed of public and private sector stakeholders and the top 20 applicants will be invited for a short interview.  In a second round the jury will select 6 winners. Due consideration will be given to gender balance and geographical diversity when selecting the winners.

When submitting the- application, please fill in the google form that contains full name, country of birth, country of citizenship, date of birth, physical address of company, link for the website of company (if available),  email address, cell phone number, and the registration/license number of  company if applicable. Please upload a copy of passport, and proof of  business license (if applicable) as requested on the Google form.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to showcase innovative solution and make a difference in Africa! Submit the application today and stand a chance to win the Africa Youth SDG Innovation Award.

By submitting an application, applicants agree to allow the organizers of the Africa Youth SDG Innovation Awardto use their names, images, and information about their innovation for media purposes.The organizers reserve the right to disqualify any applicant who fails to comply with the above-cited rules and/or who submits falsified information including counterfeited innovation ideas.




  • The 6 winners will be invited to present their innovation at the African Youth SDG Summit that will be held in Lusaka, Zambia in August 2023. All costs in relation to the travel will be borne by ECA.
  • The winners will also be invited to participate in person in one training on innovation that ECA SROSA will organize for small and medium-sized enterprises during 2023-2024. Costs of in-person participation will be borne by ECA.


  • Any individual of African nationality who was between the age of 18 to 35 as at 31st December 2022
  • Who has designed an innovative product or designed an innovative process to resolve a specific development problem for society, and with a demonstrated impact on the achievement of the SDGs. The innovation may have been commercialized or is about to eb commercialized.
  • The innovative product or innovative process must be original and must have been developed no earlier than 31st December 2016
Eligible Regions: Africa.

Application Process

Applicants should submit a pitch deck of up to 15 slides in PPT, and an accompanying narrative in Word of no more than 1500 words outlining their innovative solution, by June 11,  2023. The pitch deck and the narrative should cover the same scope, and include the following information:

  • A brief overview of the development problem the innovation addresses
  • A clear description of the innovative solution
  • An explanation as to why the solution is innovative
  • A discussion on how the innovative solution impacts positively on society and on the achievement of the SDGs. The relevant SDGs should be highlighted.
  • An explanation on how the innovation was conceived, designed, applied and if applicable, commercialized (your innovation journey) and who were involved (describe your team members)
  • Challenges encountered in developing and commercializing the innovation and how challenges were overcome
  • A summary of the business model that can be used to commercialize the innovation and potential for scalability
  • The stage of the development of the business (idea / Minimum Viable Product MVP/ established business/gaining traction / etc) including relevant figures wherever feasible (Monthly Active Users, Monthly Recurring Revenues, and others as relevant)
  • How do you see the market for your innovation evolving and what are your future plans.
  • Other information you deem pertinent to include (e.g. challenges for getting innovation patented etc)

Application Deadline: June 11, 2023

Application ClosedOfficial link

For Further Queries

For further queries please email them at [email protected] or visit their official website to get in touch with them.
Disclaimer: Youth Opportunities spreads opportunities for your convenience and ease based on available information, and thus, does not take any responsibility of unintended alternative or inaccurate information. As this is not the official page, we recommend you to visit the official website of opportunity provider for complete information. For organizations, this opportunity is shared with sole purpose of promoting “Access to Information” for all and should not be associated with any other purposes.

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