Appropriate Technology Competition 2023

What is Appropriate Technology?

Appropriate Technology (AT) refers to the most effective technology created using indigenous resources that could be easily and economically utilized by local communities to meet their needs and that would contribute to creating sustainable development of local communities. The AT competition aims at building the innovation and technological capacity of a country in response to local problems.

AT Competition Trinidad and Tobago

The inaugural AT Competition for Trinidad and Tobago was organized and executed by the World Intellectual Property Organisaton (WIPO), the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO), The UWI, and the Trinidad and Tobago Intellectual Property Office (TTIPO). Trinidad and Tobago now joins the list of countries where the AT Competition was successfully implemented in the past including Ethiopia, Malaysia, Ghana, Philippines, Zambia, Vietnam, Mongolia and the Dominican Republic.

Participants were provided with rigorous training sessions on intellectual property and business starting with an orientation workshop in January 2023, followed by national workshops and online training. Nine finalists presented their project pitches to an expert panel of judges, and the competition culminated with a Closing Ceremony and Awards Presentation at The Brix Hotel in Port of Spain on 29th March 2023. These projects sought to address national developmental issues in the areas of crime, flooding, traffic, energy efficiency/solutions, waste management and food production., which are linked to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) such as SDG 9 “Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure.”


The prizes for the Appropriate Technology Competition included WIPO Certificates, training and mentoring by partners, the opportunity to pitch the proposals to Planting Seeds Caribbean, training and mentoring in digital fabrication/prototyping by NIHERST, a scholarship by the TTIPO to pursue WIPO’s Advanced Distance Learning course on intellectual property, entry into CARIRI’s Idea Advisory Service (IAS) subject to relevant criterion, and a scholarship to CARIRI's Business Hatchery Programme.

Additionally, the first-place winner received a cash prize of US $1000 sponsored by the United Independent Petroleum Marketing Company limited (UNIPET). An Apple IPad Pro was also awarded by the TTIPO.

The second-place winner received a cash prize of US $500 that was sponsored by the Point Lisas Industrial Port Development Corporation Limited (PLIPDECO), and a Samsung Galaxy tablet that was awarded by the TTIPO. 

The third-place winner received a cash prize of US $250 that was sponsored by the National Gas Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited (NGC), and an Amazon Fire tablet from the TTIPO.

The top three winners were:

  • 1st place: Amanda Ramdass - Microbes in Remediation and Industry – Bioremediation Techniques and Commercial Enzymes
  • 2nd place: Kristelle Ramcharan - Ecologically Sustainable Vertically Integrated Plant-Based Food and Packaging Manufacturing Initiative
  • 3rd place: Richard Sebro – Suspended Organic Consortium in Alginate (SOCA) Boom

About the Winning Appropriate Technology

Microbes, fungi, yeast, bacteria, can transform and/or degrade harmful pollutants such as crude oil, industrial waste (synthetic dyes, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, neurotoxins), plastics etc., in a process called bioremediation. Bioremediation technology is cost-effective, efficient, and environmentally friendly.

Trinidad and Tobago has a unique biodiversity like no other country and is a hotspot for indigenous microbes with tremendous biotechnological potential. Indigenous microbes were used as bioremediation technology for cleaning the environment and the use of their enzymes in various industries. Profiling of these microbes was done using molecular and omics (genomics and proteomics) tools, and biotechnology.

Amanda’s experience doing the competition

“I considered it a challenge, a personal one, and the nature of this challenge required a certain level of discipline. I had to dig deep into my resourcefulness and look internally and be intrinsically motivated. The process of this competition pushed me outside of my comfort zone and improved my level of confidence. After the event it was gratifying to know the prize was that I passed the test in my capacity to deliver…that was my reward. It was truly an engaging and instructional journey. The professional support offered made a huge difference in how the project was developed in terms of the business aspect of the competition. It was an experience I will never forget and remain deeply humbled and honoured to have been the winner of this competition.” 

From left: Kirt Hills (UNIPET COO), Amanda Ramdass (winner), Natasha Barrow (PS AGLA), Kyosook Choi (KIPO)


From left: Paul Regis (WIPO), Kyosook Choi (KIPO), Graham King (UWI STACIE)


Competition organisers and trainers from the TTIPO, WIPO, KIPO and The UWI, and competition finalists gather on The Brix rooftop after the Closing Ceremony


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