Winners announced for the 2020 J-WAFS World Food Day video competition: MIT research for a food secure future

In honour of 'World food day 2020', the Abdul Latif Jameel Water and Food Systems Lab (J-WAFS) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) launched its first video competition for students and recent graduates to showcase their research to solve global food systems challenges. With over 25 entries, the first contest demonstrated the range of approaches applied across MIT departments and programmes. After careful review by a panel of experts, the prize-winning videos were those that presented innovative solutions to increase food security now, and into the future.

The first-place winning video was 'Re-envisioning drip irrigation systems for farmers in sub-Saharan Africa' which was submitted by Georgia Van de Zande, PhD candidate, Carolyn Sheline, PhD candidate, and Julia Sokol, post-doctoral researcher, who are all members of MIT's department of mechanical engineering. In their video, the three students, who form part of the Global Engineering and Research (GEAR) Lab, discuss their research re-envisioning and redesigning solar-powered drip irrigation systems in arid climates. The team works from multiple perspectives to design new water-efficient systems that are geared toward user adoption at all scales.

Other prize-winning videos recognised by the judges were:

Second place winner: 'OneForest: Image recognition for monitoring forests' by Björn Lüjens, PhD candidate, department of aeronautics and astronautics

Judges' Choice Award: Creative communication: 'Can we do better than a fridge? - MIT evaporative cooling tech for low income, rural communities' by Alejandro Diaz, BS candidate, department of electrical engineering and computer science

Judges' Choice Award: Research originality: 'Seaweed harvesting: A regenerative food community' by Angela Loescher-Montal, MArch candidate, Ous Abou Ras, MArch candidate and Arthur Boscolo, MArch candidate, all from the department of architecture

Judges' Choice Award: Potential for impact: 'Green Source: For a food secure future' by Celi Khanyile-Lynch, MBA '20, Sloan School of Management

Judges' Choice Award: Visualising solutions: 'ROOFSCAPES' by Olivier Faber, MArch candidate, Eytan Levi, MArch and MS in real estate development dual degree candidate and Tim Cousin, MArch candidate, all from the department of architecture.

Based on the success of its first video competition, J-WAFS will hold a World Water Day video competition in 2021.