Friday 27 November 2020
  • The event supports the Qatar National Vision 2030 by raising the level of participation in STEM
  •  Last night’s FameLab International Final 2020 was delivered in an exciting new online format
  • Qatar’s Ahmed Maani was among 20 scientists from all over the world to compete in Semi- Finals for the top 10 spots in this global science communication competition

This year Qatar national winner Ahmed Maani, an IT and technology teacher at Qatar Science and Technology Secondary school not only made it through to the International final of FameLab – a global science communication competition - last night (Thursday, November 26) but also became the runner up in the international competition.

He was among 20 scientists from all over the world to compete for the top spot, having been crowned the winner of the Qatar National competition back in July.

Usually held at the Cheltenham Science Festival in London, this year’s event , which is run in partnership with the British Council, was slightly different with finalists competing online – delivering three-minute presentations on a range of topics from the world of science, technology, engineering and mathematics – with Ahmed focusing his around data security and encryption.

FameLab, the science communication competition owned by Cheltenham Science Festival in the UK, and delivered globally by the British Council, is brought to Qatar in partnership with Qatar National Research Fund – a member of Qatar Foundation (QF) and supported by the Ministry of Education and Higher Education.

Speaking about the competition, Ahmed Maani, said: “The FameLab competition is one of the wonderful experiences that I have had in my life, which added to my science communication skill, scientific research and the content presentation, and the most important thing I have learnt in this experience is that; with perseverance, persistence and hard work, achievements happen.

"Thanks to Allah first, I wont be able to achieve except through the cooperative work where I cannot deny my friends and family support. I would like to dedicate this achievement to Qatar, that supports the educational development and provide platforms to scientific research, the British Council, Qatar National Research Fund, Qatar Science Technology Secondary school, Ministry of Education and Higher Education and Cheltenham Festival in the UK.

Sam Ayton, Director of the British Council Qatar said, “I am delighted at the overwhelming response that FameLab has had again this year, in spite of the global pandemic that prevented FameLab national winners from 20 countries from coming together in the UK this year as part of Cheltenham Science Festival, I was excited to see FameLab International finals delivered in a new way and engaging audience digitally. Congratulations to Qatar FameLab National winner, Ahmed for making it to the FameLab International and becoming runner up. We are proud to work with our partners Qatar National Research Fund and Ministry of Education and Higher Education in this increasingly important area”

Dr Abdul Sattar Al-Taie, Executive Director, QNRF, added: “FameLab is providing us with a steady stream of talented and capable STEM communicators whose ideas are impactful at both the national and global levels. We are all rooting for Ahmed and congratulate him on the success he has achieved so far representing Qatar in FameLab International 2020. His journey as a teacher and as a competitor will certainly inspire students across Qatar to pursue their scientific passions and excel in them to raise Qatar’s flag around the world.”

The FameLab International final can still be viewed online, If you missed it, view it here:

Notes to Editor

FameLab® is a competition owned and created by Cheltenham Festivals in the UK. The British Council has license to deliver the competition overseas. The event this year is billed as the FameLab International 2020 Online Final.

Cheltenham Science Festival This year’s Cheltenham Science Festival became Cheltenham Science Festival @ Home. With live and pre-recorded events, Q&As and workshops, the Science Festival kept its intrigue and character, despite not being able to have a physical site. The virtual Science Festival was streamed for free on our YouTube channel between 2 – 7 June 2020. The next Cheltenham Science Festival is planned to take place on 8-13 June 2021.

For more information, please visit

 About Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF)
Driven by the aim of fostering a culture of research in Qatar, QNRF was established in 2006 to advance knowledge and education by acting as a support system for researchers. It is a member within the Research & Development establishment at Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development. QNRF administers funding for original, competitively selected research and furthers collaborations within academia, the public, governmental and non-governmental sectors through effective, mutually beneficial partnerships. While QNRF actively seeks internationally recognised researchers, it is dedicated to funding research that meets the needs of Qatar. For more information, visit: Leading Qatar’s vision to become an international centre for research and development excellence and innovation, QF R&D is home to Qatar Science & Technology Park, a world-class hub for technology innovation and commercialisation, as well as Qatar National Research Fund, a globally renowned scientific research funding organisation.

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We work with over 100 countries in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. We make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body.

For more information on FameLab, please visit