Building peace in the minds of men and women

UNESCO/Emir Jaber Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah Prize for Digital Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities


The Jury consists of five independent members, who are appointed by the Director-General of UNESCO for an initial two-year period, with the possibility of two renewals so that they can serve for a maximum of six years.
Jurors are selected based on being personalities with a recognized reputation in the field covered, while also taking into consideration the need for equitable geographical distribution, gender equality and the principle of non-payment of honoraria. The Jury includes persons with disabilities.

Mr Fernando Botelho (Brazil)

"Training and technology are the materials of which the future is made, talent and inspiration are the energy that shapes it."

An Ashoka Fellow, leads the F123 initiative, a service that provides high performance software, training, and technical support--at extremely competitive prices--to foundations and organizations helping the blind and visually impaired. (Biography).


Ms May Chidiac (Lebanon)

"Empowering people with disabilities in our present digital era is crucial for ensuring long-term prosperous societies".

Founder of the May Chidiac Foundation, Lebanese journalist and winner of the UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize in 2006

Professor Klaus Miesenberger (Austria)

"If the 21st century is really the start of the information age, then eAccessibility is its new fundamental human right and with Assistive Technologies the tool to build a more open and inclusive society."

Professor, Institut Integriert Studieren, Johannes Kepler Universitat Linz and International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs, ICCHP

Mr Martin Babu Mwesigwa (Uganda)

"An inspiring and innovative approach of boosting PWDs rights with regards to access to information."

Member and Rapporteur of the Committee of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and former Program Manager for the National Union of Disabled Persons in Uganda

Ms Saima Wazed Hossain (Bangladesh)

"Technological advances are an amazing resource that can truly enable persons with disabilities to communicate and engage with the world around them, and to gain access to knowledge and skills they need to be successful and lead productive lives. Unfortunately, too often they are an afterthought for most countries. So, no matter how much advancement we make in the area of technology we have to constantly remind countries that the needs of PWDs must be included effectively, in order to ensure their digital empowerment."

Chairperson of National Advisory Committee on Autism; Psychologist, Member of the World Health Organization Expert Advisory Panel on Mental Health (Biography)

Ms Catalina Devandas Aguilar (Costa Rica)

Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, United Nations Human Rights Council

Afrique du Sud

Mrs Marie Schoeman (South Africa) - Chair

Chief Education Specialist, Department of Basic Education of the Republic of South Africa (Biography)


Dr Ahmad Abbas Abdullah (Kuwait)

Kuwait University, College of Education


Professor Chris Forlin (Australia)

Professor of Special and Inclusive Education, and Head of the Department of Special Education and Counseling, at the Hong Kong Institute of Education


Professor Dora S. Bjarnasson (Iceland)

Professor of Special Education, and Chair of the Department of Special Education, at the School of Education of the University of Iceland


Dr Phyllis Magrab (USA)

Department of Pediatrics, Georgetown University