#MI2022 hosts inaugural Innovation & Research Battlefield

Offering up to US$28,600 Innovation Grant for solutions to critical sector challenges.

The “quick pitch” event is designed to showcase and fund early-stage innovation, connecting researchers with mining’s largest companies

Key points
  • Investing in African Mining Indaba, Business for Development and the Development Partner Institute are calling for innovation and research submissions to address critical sustainability issues facing the sector. 
  • The inaugural Innovation & Research Battlefield 2022 will be a high-profile platform for researchers to connect with sector decision-makers. 
  • BHP and The University of Queensland are sponsors of the US$28,600 Innovation Grant which will support early-stage innovation and research.
  • The organisers are seeking global applications to this year’s focus challenge: Building Sustainable Post-Mining Economies.
  • Applications are open until 06 April. Shortlisted applicants will be notified on 15 April, with Battle Round pitches in Cape Town on May 9 and 11.
(17 March 2022) Cape Town, South Africa – A new annual event calling for innovative research proposals to address the mining industry’s toughest sustainable development challenges is coming to the Mining Indaba conference agenda this year.

On 9 and 11 May, the Innovation & Research Battlefield, an event convened by Investing in African Mining Indaba (Mining Indaba), Business for Development and the Development Partner Institute (DPI Mining), will be a high-profile platform showcasing early-stage innovations focused on this year’s challenge:  Building Sustainable Post-Mining Economies. 

The event organisers intend to attract a pool of global applicants by connecting academics, researchers, the private sector, NGOs, and young people with a vested interest in sustainable mining to decision-makers in the sector. 

DPI Mining Executive Director Wendy Tyrrell said, “We want the Innovation & Research Battlefield to be a catalyst for closer, more agile collaboration between the private sector, academia and the mining sector to solve critical issues facing the industry, and to bridge the gap between proposed solutions and the funding needed for their implementation.”

Business for Development CEO Karen James said, “It is essential we develop and test innovative solutions to the sector’s tough sustainability and development challenges against a backdrop of climate change, automation, reduced global mobility, a growing ESG agenda and rising stakeholder expectations.” 

Mining Indaba Advisory Board Co-Chair and Head of Content Tom Quinn said, “We are thrilled to be the platform of choice for our partners, DPI Mining and Business for Development, to help launch this essential, timely and innovative event forging deep links between the worlds of academia, business and technology to ensure mining grows sustainably and helps to meet the sector’s ESG mandates.”

Ten participants, shortlisted through pre-defined evaluation criteria, will have the opportunity to pitch their research proposals to judges and attendees at Mining Indaba, Africa’s most important mining industry conference. The pitch can be done virtually or in person. BHP and The University of Queensland’s Sustainable Minerals Institute is a sponsor of the US$28,600 prize. 

The event is hosted by Sheila Khama, former CEO of De Beers Botswana and natural resources policy advisor at the World Bank and African Development Bank. The judging panel includes a representative from Business for Development and the Development Partner Institute (DPI Mining). 

Applications are open until 6 April 2022. Successful first-round applicants will be notified on 15 April and invited to pitch in the second round. Applicants need to be affiliated with an organisation and early applications are encouraged. 

For more information on the Innovation & Research Battlefield and to apply, click here.

About Business for Development

Founded in 2007, Business for Development (B4D) builds partnerships between communities, business, government, researchers, and public and private funders to achieve sustainable and profitable outcomes – benefiting everyone. 
Working collaboratively with the resource sector’s largest players, Business for Development designs and implements livelihood programs to achieve sustainable outcomes; improve the local environment; strengthen social licence to operate; meet ESG requirements and create a sustainable post-mine economy legacy. 
B4D has current and past projects in Asia Pacific and Africa, most recently in Kenya, South Africa, Mozambique. Papua New Guinea and Australia.

Contact Meg Kauthen at [email protected]

About Development Partner Institute

The Development Partner Institute (DPI Mining) is an international coalition of ambitious leaders from across the global mining ecosystem. We are committed to a future where the contribution of mining to economic and social development is truly maximised. We do things differently by employing a whole-of-value-chain approach in our work, bringing together stakeholders from the entire mining ecosystem to effect meaningful change through our pilots and initiatives. 

DPI’s Pathway to Impact includes programs focused on Mining and the SDGs, and our exciting flagship program, the Responsible Sourcing Coalition (RESCO) launched in September 2021.

Contact Allison George at [email protected]

About Investing in African Mining Indaba 

Also known as Mining Indaba, the world’s largest mining investment conference and exhibition is dedicated to the successful capitalisation and development of mining interests in Africa. For almost 30 years, Mining Indaba has held a unique and widening perspective of the African mining industry, bringing together international and African stakeholders, visionaries and innovators from across the spectrum. We are also dedicated to supporting education, career development, sustainable development and as a next-generation platform to help economies thrive in Africa.

The 4-day event attracts junior, mid-tier and major mining companies, along with global and continental investors, heads of state, ministers and Africa’s leading policymakers.

Contact Tom Quinn at [email protected]

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