People Design Challenge



A group of students from the Dubai campus received the People's Prize for the idea to create a simpler, greener, economical future – a cook stove ecoPit!

Saadeddine El Nakib, Balaji Kumar and Karan Kumar gave a presentation that wowed the judges on Friday, June 14 in the Grand Finals of Engineering for People Design Challenge hosted by Engineering Without Borders (EWB).

They were amongst 6,500 students and 31 universities across the UK and Ireland who took part.

The Engineering for People Design Challenge launched in the UK in 2011 in partnership with Engineers Without Borders Australia.

It has improved the skills and competencies of over 28,000 undergraduates and to date, student design ideas have focused on communities in India, Nepal, Cambodia, Australia, Vietnam, Timor Leste, Cameroon and more.

Dr Reza Mohammadi and Team HELIOS students

Team HELIOS, was also selected from among 60 teams from Edinburgh EPS school to represent Heriot-Watt at the grand finals.

The team of Amrit Anup Menon, Alexander Cooper, Avais Mahmood and Danielle Dobson showcased their Helius solar vapour generator to provide rural communities access to clean water.

Edinburgh made it through to the Top-6 teams in the Grand Finals and presented their idea to an audience of over 200 people. 

This Engineering for People Design Challenge provided a platform for the students to focus their knowledge and ideas towards designing sustainable solutions to improve the lives of certain disadvantaged communities of Tamil Nadu.

Reza Mohammadi, the Global course Leader and Senior Lecture from the School of Engineering and Physical Sciences Edinburgh selected the teams with the most thorough and most developed solutions to compete in the final, and to give opportunity to the students to make a difference in Tamil-Nadu in India.

He said: "I'm very excited, this is a remarkable opportunity for the students selected to go forward to the UK national finals. This has developed their presentation skills, and potentially make a real difference in the world using the skills they are learning through their education at Heriot-Watt. Well done to both teams."