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MIT Technology Review recognises 20 emerging innovators under 35 for the Asia Pacific region

MIT Technology Review’s ‘Innovators Under 35’ list for the Asia Pacific region honours 10 women and 10 men. In association with EmTech Asia 2020, the list celebrates 20 researchers, inventors, and entrepreneurs who are changing the world.

3 December 2019, SINGAPORE – MIT Technology Review has announced its annual list of Innovators Under 35 for the Asia Pacific Region. This acclaimed list honours innovators making great strides in their respective fields. Selected from a pool of 200 exceptional candidates, the 2020 list is double the usual number for the APAC region.

“It’s part of our ethos that technology can, and should, be a force for good,” said Elizabeth Bramson-Boudreau, CEO and publisher of MIT Technology Review. “We’re excited to be expanding our pool of talented young men and women, celebrating the impact they are making in this world.”

“The 20 ‘Innovators Under 35’ are a group of exceptional young scientists pursuing research that — in many cases — relates to substantial challenges facing humanity. The potential impact of their research is further increased when it becomes the foundation of one or more products that form the core of a Deep Tech startup,” said Steve Leonard, Founding CEO, SGInnovate. “Building a company from scratch is always hard, and even more so in the Deep Tech space.” - EmTech Asia is pleased to partner with SGInnovate as the 2020 Deep Tech Partner of the event.

“The 20 ‘Innovators Under 35’ are a group of exceptional young scientists pursuing research that — in many cases — relates to substantial challenges facing humanity.”

~ Steve Leonard, Founding CEO, SGInnovate​

Among the 2020 Innovators Under 35 are researchers, inventors, and entrepreneurs whose work includes applications in agriculture, artificial intelligence, biomedicine, construction, energy, new materials, robotics, and water. The 20 honourees are:

  • Anastasia Volkova, AUSTRALIA, CEO and Founder, FluroSat, built a crop monitoring and management tool to help agribusinesses globally grow better yields with less resources.
  • Bolei Zhou, HONG KONG SAR, Assistant Professor, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, developed models to understand how deep neural networks work and unboxed the artificial intelligence black box.  
  • Carine Lim, SINGAPORE, Ph.D. Candidate, National University of Singapore, spearheaded the development of a low-cost platform for early diagnosis and monitoring of Alzheimer's Disease progression.
  • Chunfeng Wan, SINGAPORE, Technical Director, Meinhardt (Singapore) Pte Ltd, pioneered the development of osmotic power generation by pressure retarded osmosis (PRO), not only with freshwater, but with municipal wastewater as well.
  • Connor Talbot, NEW ZEALAND, Cofounder, ProstheteX, created cost-effective 3D printed prosthetic sockets that conform to an amputee’s limb throughout their daily activities, helping reduce pain and discomfort.
  • Dongliang (Donny) Chao, AUSTRALIA, Researcher, The University of Adelaide, pioneered the development of new safe and low-cost battery technologies for next-generation reliable and scalable energy storage.
  • Gibran Huzaifah Asmi El Farizy, INDONESIA, CEO and Cofounder, eFishery, developed an AI-powered IoT smart feeding solution for fish and shrimp farming, helping more than 15,000 fish farmers increase their yields.
  • Hao Guo, HONG KONG SAR, Postdoc Fellow, The University of Hong Kong, invented a new reusable water filter for clean water production in less developed countries and for disaster relief.
  • Ka Yi Ling, SINGAPORE, Cofounder and Chief Science Officer, Shiok Meats, has developed cell-based crustaceans, and has patented technology for establishing crustacean muscle and fat stem cell lines.
  • Katherine A. Kim, TAIWAN, Associate Professor, National Taiwan University, has developed a power converter hardware and control tool for improving output power and reliability for solar farms and emerging photovoltaics systems, like wearables.
  • Lukasz Orlowski, SINGAPORE, Cofounder and CTO, Archanan, developed a solution that makes High Performance Computing (HPC) accessible by providing a powerful web-based supercomputer emulation engine.
  • Mohammad Hossein Davood Abadi Farahani, SINGAPORE, Cofounder and CEO, SEPPURE, has invented and commercialised solvent-resistant nanofiltration membranes.
  • Nazanin Saeidi, SINGAPORE, Postdoc Researcher - Future Cities Laboratory, Singapore ETH Centre, has developed a mycelium-based composite material for application in the construction industry as an affordable, sustainable and renewable building material.
  • Ping Luo, HONG KONG SAR, Assistant Professor, The University of Hong Kong, whose research focuses on applying AI to the world of fashion as well as to understanding the decision-making processes behind Convolutional Neural Networks.
  • Po-Yen Chen, SINGAPORE, Assistant Professor, National University of Singapore, created unconventional robotic materials, composed of platinum and graphene, or 2D-material electronics, to use in wearable technologies and smart soft robotics.
  • Sadaf Monajemi, SINGAPORE, Cofounder and CTO, See-Mode Technologies, developed software that combines deep learning, signal processing, and text recognition to predict and prevent a stroke.
  • Stephanie Hui Kit Yap, SINGAPORE, Ph.D. Candidate, Nanyang Technological University, has combined interferometric optical fiber-based sensors and nanotechnology to develop a hand-held low-cost sensor for water quality that can be extended to other analyses.
  • Wei Ru Wong, MALAYSIA, Researcher, University of Malaya, has developed a novel technique for rapid and sensitive detection of dengue infection using plasma sensor technology.
  • Yvonne Gao, SINGAPORE, Research Scientist, Institute for Materials Research and Engineering – A*STAR, devised a promising modular quantum computing architecture and successfully constructed the critical building blocks to demonstrate its viability.
  • Ziyan Guo, HONG KONG SAR, PhD Researcher, The University of Hong Kong, has developed a world-first intra-operative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)-guided neurosurgical robot capable of navigating bilateral stereotactic tools through both left and right burr holes.

The 20 ‘Innovators Under 35’ will be recognised at the EmTech Asia conference, held on 25-26 February 2020 at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre in Singapore.


  1. Images and Biographies: Low-resolution images and biographies/synopses of the finalists may be downloaded here.
  2. The MIT Technology Review’s Innovators Under 35 nominations were judged this year by the jury panel listed here.

About Innovators Under 35:

Since 1999, MIT Technology Review has recognised outstanding young innovators under the age of 35. Innovators Under 35 honourees are celebrated annually for their work in shaping the future of technology in fields such as biotechnology, materials, computer hardware, energy, transportation, communications, and the Internet. Our goal is to recognise the development of new technology or the creative application of existing technologies to solve the world’s biggest problems. We reward ingenious and elegant work that matters to the world at large—not just to peers in a particular field or industry. In 2010, we expanded our search for the most promising innovators by organising regional editions of the list. There are regional versions in Latin America, Europe, China, India, the Middle East and Southeast Asia/Oceania. Past global Innovators Under 35 honourees include Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Google’s Sergey Brin and Larry Page, Tumblr’s David Karp and Spotify’s Daniel Ek among others.

About MIT Technology Review:

Founded in 1899 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, MIT Technology Review is a digitally oriented global media company whose mission is to bring about better-informed and more conscious decisions about technology through authoritative, influential, and trustworthy journalism. We do this in features, news analysis, business reports, photo essays, reviews, and interactive digital experiences. We do this with beautifully designed platforms and publications online, in print, on mobile, and in person at live events around the world. We invite our readers to probe deeper, examine data, and get to know experts and their opinions to see, explore, and understand new technologies and their impact. MIT Technology Review’s audience is anyone, anywhere, who believes that technology can solve hard problems, grow prosperity, and expand human possibilities. Accuracy and independence are our highest priorities: our coverage is independent of any influence, including our ownership by MIT. Subscribe. Follow us: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+.


MIT Technology Review Media Relations

About EmTech Asia:

EmTech Asia is where technology, business, and culture converge. It is the showcase for emerging technologies with the greatest potential to change our lives and an access point to the most innovative people and companies in the world. Most of all, it is a place of inspiration — an opportunity to glimpse the future and begin to understand the technologies that matter and how they will change the face of business and drive the new global economy. For more information, please visit

Find us on: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn with the official event hashtag, #EmTechAsia


Theodore Woon

Pinpoint PR Pte Ltd

M: +65 9155 3507


About Koelnmesse:

Koelnmesse is one of the world's largest trade fair companies. Its more than 70 trade fairs and exhibitions have the broadest international scope in the industry, as 60 percent of the exhibitors and 40 percent of the visitors come from outside Germany. The Koelnmesse events include the leading global trade fairs for 25 sectors, such as imm cologne, Anuga, IDS, INTERMOT, Interzum Cologne, Photokina, Gamescom and the International Hardware Fair Cologne. Koelnmesse is MIT Technology Review’s co-organiser for EmTech Asia and Innovators Under 35 Asia Pacific. For more information, please visit


Jamie Huang

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About SGInnovate:

At SGInnovate, we build and scale Deep Tech startups into high potential companies with global impact. We believe that hard global problems can be solved using Deep Tech, and Singapore, where we are based, is uniquely positioned to realise Deep Tech innovations that can tackle these challenges. Our Deep Tech Nexus Strategy is focused on adding tangible value to the Deep Tech startup ecosystem in two key areas – development of Human Capital and deployment of Investment Capital. With the support of our partners and co-investors, we back entrepreneurial scientists through equity-based investments, access to talent and business-building advice. Our efforts are prioritised around emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Tech, MedTech and Quantum Tech, which represent impactful and scalable answers to global challenges. SGInnovate is a private-limited company wholly owned by the Singapore Government. For more information, please visit


Grace Chiang
+65 9797 9615

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