This year, Qatar national winner Ahmed Maani, an IT and technology teacher at Qatar Science and Technology Secondary School not only made it to the final competition of FameLab, but also bagged the runner up position in the international arena. FameLab is a global science communication competition.

Maani was among the 20 scientists from all over the world to compete for the top spot, having been crowned the winner of the Qatar national competition in July.

Usually held at the Cheltenham Science Festival in London, this year’s event, which is run in partnership with the British Council, was slightly different with finalists competing online – delivering three-minute presentations on a range of topics from the world of science, technology, engineering and mathematics – with Ahmed focusing his presentation around data security and encryption.

FameLab is owned by Cheltenham Science Festival in the UK, and delivered globally by the British Council. It is brought to Qatar in partnership with Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) – a member of Qatar Foundation – and supported by the Ministry of Education and Higher Education.

Speaking about the competition, Maani said that the FameLab competition is one of the most wonderful experiences in his life, adding to his science communication skill. The most important thing he learned in this experience – with perseverance, persistence and hard work, achievements happen.

Maani offered his thanks to Allah, and to friends and family for their support. He also dedicated his winning to Qatar, for the country’s support of educational development and for providing platforms for scientific research. He also expressed appreciation to the British Council, QNRF, Qatar Science Technology Secondary School, the Ministry of Education and Higher Education and the Cheltenham Festival in the UK.

British Council Qatar Director Sam Ayton said they are delighted at the overwhelming response that FameLab has had again this year, despite the global pandemic that prevented FameLab national winners from 20 countries coming together in the UK as part of Cheltenham Science Festival.

I was excited to see FameLab International finals delivered in a new way and engaging audience digitally. Congratulations to Qatar FameLab National winner, Ahmed for making it to the FameLab International and becoming runner up. We are proud to work with our partners Qatar National Research Fund and Ministry of Education and Higher Education in this increasingly important area.

QNRF Executive Director Dr Abdul Sattar Al Taie added that FameLab is providing a steady stream of talented and capable STEM communicators whose ideas are impactful at both the national and global levels. He said that they are all rooting for Ahmed and congratulated him on the success he has achieved in representing Qatar in FameLab International 2020.

His journey as a teacher and as a competitor will certainly inspire students across Qatar to pursue their scientific passions and excel in them to raise Qatar’s flag around the world.”

The FameLab International final can still be viewed online via YouTube.