RTA unveils finalists for self-driving challenge

Mattar Al-Tayer with Dr. Arif Al-Hammadi and Laila Faridoon at a press conference held to announce the finalists of the challenge
Updated 31 October 2018

RTA unveils finalists for self-driving challenge

Mattar Al-Tayer, director-general and chairman of the board of executive directors of Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), announced that the participation in the Dubai World Challenge for Self-Driving Transport had exceeded the target by 30 percent, by the end of the registration phase. 

Companies, universities, colleges and institutions submitted applications globally. Attendees of the event included Dr. Arif Al-Hammadi, executive vice president of Khalifa University; Laila Faridoon, chairperson of the organizing committee of the Dubai World Congress for Self-Driving Transport; Dr. Steve Shladover, the international jury head of Dubai World Challenge for Self-Driving Transport; and Adel Shakri, head of the Dubai World Challenge for Self-Driving Transport Committee. 

The leader’s category finalists included: Navya and EasyMile from France, Drive.ai from the US, Westfield from the UK, Baidu from China, and 2getthere from the Netherlands. 

The list of startup finalists included: Sensible from Finland, Derq from the UAE, and IAuto from Taiwan. 

As for the local universities, the announced finalists were: Dubai University, UAE University, Al-Ain University of Science and Technology, and Abu Dhabi University. Among the international universities were Friee Berlin University in Germany, CMU in the US, Intelligent Systems Lab at Universidad Carlos lll de Madrid in Spain, and UTS in Australia.

“The challenge awards amount to more than $5 million; $3 million will be allocated to leader’s category, $1.5 million to the startups category, and $600,000 to local and foreign universities ($300,000 each). A team of international experts in the field of smart mobility will assess the finalists by several technical criteria,” said Al-Tayer.

Finalists will be subjected to intensive tests in Dubai in 2019, and an international jury panel will review all submissions to select the winners of the inaugural edition of the challenge. Winners will be honored during the first edition of the Dubai World Conference for Self-Driving Transport scheduled to be held in October 2019.

PISJ-ES tackles Islamophobia in Model UN conference

Updated 24 February 2020

PISJ-ES tackles Islamophobia in Model UN conference

Pakistan International School Jeddah — English Section (PISJ-ES) recently held its third Model United Nations (MUN) conference — a simulation of the UN intended to give students an insight into diplomatic norms and global issues.

One Hundred “delegates” representing different countries participated in the three-day conference, where they discussed various global issues. The theme for this year was “Freedom of Expression — Its Scope in Promoting Tolerance,” with a focus on religious intolerance, specifically Islamophobia.

The program formally began with a recitation of verses from the Holy Qur’an, followed by the national anthems of both Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.

Principal Adnan Nasir said: “The platform of PISJ-ES MUN has emerged as the catalyst for global awareness, paradigm shift and consciousness among the students. With innovative views and flexible thoughts, today’s youth has a better understanding to embrace diversity and make decisions to bring about the change that our world needs the most.”

After rigorous debate, the sessions concluded with the formulation of two draft resolutions that were shared with the “presidency” of the MUN General Assembly.

The final day of the conference began with the observance of one-minute silence in solidarity with the people of Kashmir.

Consul General of Pakistan Khalid Majid, who was the chief guest, said: “Today’s session has certainly instilled determination in the students to take action as global inhabitants, and to lead a fair and just society for the future of humanity. This session should be taken as a head start to realize the importance of international relations, international security and world peace.”

Students Huriya Malik and Zainab Suad took on the roles of the president and vice president of the General Assembly respectively, while Wajeeh Khalil was the secretary-general and Ayesha Khan was the deputy secretary-general of PISJ-ES MUN.