12 - 14 May 2020
Cape Town, South Africa

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Initiate! Impact Challenge - we're looking for new talent and new ideas...

12 – 14 May 2020 | CTICC, Cape Town, South Africa

The Power and Energy industries are in constant need of new talent and new ideas to encourage the development of ‘out of the box’ strategies to bring about change. If you're a postgraduate student who's about to complete your degree and ready to work in the industry, the Initiate! Impact Challenge can help you with your next career move! This is a brilliant way to share your ideas whilst networking with peers and have access to other utility professionals to put your ideas into practice and gain maximum exposure within a pool of the top power, energy and water decision-makers. 

The Initiate! Impact Challenge is proudly supported by:

Enel Foundation             The Innovation Hub

What is the Initiate! Impact Challenge?

What is the Initiate! Impact Challenge?

The Initiate! 3-day challenge is for postgraduate students enrolled at Stellenbosch University, University of Cape Town, the University of Witwatersrand, Lagos University and Strathmore University. Four students will be selected to represent their university to complete a series of challenges where they'll have the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the conference and exhibition. They will have to source the opinions and input from a wide variety of experts attending the event, pull ideas from conference sessions and the exhibition floor to enable them to compile their responses and strategies. 

On the last day, students will be invited to our ‘Ideas Pitching Platform’ at the Training and Development workshop, where each team will have 5-10 minutes to pitch their innovation to a prestigious committee of judges.

Why apply to participate in Initiate!?

Why apply to participate in Initiate!?

Not only could your team win great prizes, as a participant you will receive:

  • Paid-for economy flights to and from Cape Town, accommodation and meals
  • Incubate your innovation with our knowledge partner, The Innovation Hub
  • An opportunity to be interviewed by ESI Africa, Africa's leading power and energy journal, where you can showcase your research across Africa and the globe
  • A free pass to African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa valued at R12,500
  • Gain maximum exposure within a pool of the top power, energy and water decision-makers
  • Learn about career opportunities

Submissions open in January 2020

Your chance to win!

Your chance to win!

Your chance to win!

Not only will you receive all the amazing benefits as a participant, you could also win great prizes for your team!

Do you qualify?

Do you qualify?

Do you qualify?

If you are:

  • A post-graduate student at Stellenbosch University, University of Cape Town, University of Witwatersrand, Lagos University or Strathmore University and
  • Studying Engineering, Business, Energy or IT
  • Able to thrive in a team setting
  • Capable of working under time pressure

... then you're a perfect candidate!

Important Dates

Important Dates

Important Dates

Abstract Submission: TBC

Notification of Acceptance: TBC

Last day of registration: TBC

Final Competition: 12-14 May 2019

Submissions open in January 2020

Entry Process

  1. Submit your individual abstract
  2. Individuals are selected by a AUW and PGAF Advisory Board members
  3. Based on your abstract, you could be selected to be part of your university team
  4. You will be notified on the success of your entry and be informed of your team members by TBC

How to enter?

Simply complete the submission form with the following information:

  • Abstract Title: What will be the energy of the future?Please motivate your answer. (maximum 500 words)
  • List three learning objectives you would want to take home. (maximum 100 words)
  • Your biography and a photograph 

Submissions are now closed

An overview of Initiate! 

Hear from past participants

Participant Interview

Cyndhu Sriram and Abdur-Rahmaan Loonat participated
in the Initiate! programme at European Utility Week 2018.
They share their feedback on the programme and the
energy sector in Africa with Smart Energy International.

Read the interview

  • “Initiate! is the perfect platform where start-ups, students, young professionals and established professionals can share ideas and innovations in a way that is mutually beneficial!”
    Sietske Jacobs
    Advisor to Initiate! at European Utility Week
  • “It is vital to showcase all the opportunities that are arising from the fourth industrial revolution to the younger generation so that they can realise the possibility to create unique innovative solutions to Africa’s challenges. After all, it will be this young talent that carries South Africa, and Africa into the age of digitalisation.”
    Abdur-Rahmaan Loonat
    Participant in the Initiate! Impact Challenge at European Utility Week 2018
  • “This whole experience personally widened my perspective and insight into the energy sectors around the world. I was able to build a strong network with industry professionals. Seeing the overall keen sense of urgency to get consumers on board with the movement is something I felt and adopted myself. I began to understand the true depth of the inevitable change and this in turn deepened my own desire to contribute to the energy revolution in South Africa.”
    Cyndhu Sriram
    Participant in the Initiate! Impact Challenge at European Utility Week 2018
  • “The whole setup and environment of Initiate! brought a spark that shows the passion and dedication to accelerating the energy transition”
    Maria Freitag
    Agile’s startup talent scout


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