Winner of the Inaugural Progress Prize Announced

Held under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-Chairman of the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, and hosted by the Dubai Design District (d3)The Global Grad Show, the acclaimed annual exhibition of life-changing inventions from graduates of the world's leading design and technology universities, announced that MIKO+, a collection of jewellery that also acts as a brace for those with wrist injuries or carpal tunnel syndrome, has won the inaugural Progress Prize. 

Designed by Polish design duo, Ewa Dulcet and Martyna Świerczyńska, Domestic Design graduates of the School of Form in Poznan, Poland, MIKO+ is a family of seven pieces of jewelry with one additional value - physiotherapeutic function. The project focuses on the wrist, where pain caused by mechanical injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, have created the necessity for those suffering to wear braces or splints. The MIKO+ jewelry pieces are made from gilded pink brass and mineral acrylic composite, all made by using traditional goldsmith techniques. It demonstrates an innovative combination of physiotherapeutic and aesthetic functions, transitioning the objects from medical to lifestyle products.

The Progress Prize is an international award that celebrates the next generation of design and is awarded to one Global Grad Show exhibitor each year. The winning design is selected by a global jury from fields of journalism, design, manufacturing, innovation and investment. The multidisciplinary nature of the jury is intended to reflect the varied assortment of partners necessary to take a project from prototype to market.

For the 2017 Progress Prize, the jury members are:


  • Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum -Vice-Chairman of the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Head of the Jury)
  • Mohammad Saeed Al Shehhi - CEO of Dubai Design District (d3)
  • Edwin Heathcoate - Architecture and Design critic, The Financial Times
  • Noah Murphy-Reinhertz - NXT Space Sustainability Leader, Nike
  • Aric Chen – Lead Curator, Design and Architecture, M+ museum
  • Petra Janssen - Owner and designer, Studio Boot and Social Label
  • Hugo Macdonald - Design Critic and Consultant
  • Jessica Bland – Head of Research and Foresight, Dubai Future Foundation


The following projects were highlighted as honourable mentions:


Nonliving stakeholders, Sungmy Kim – a program that encourages people to view objects as people and considering their experience, designed at Parsons School of Design - The New School, New York. 

Folks, Kevin Chiam – a system of kitchen utensils designed to aid the blind, designed at National University of Singapore, Singapore.

The Reagiro, Reto Togni – a manual wheelchair with a novel steering system that allows the user to control the movement of the chair through the upper body rather than through breaking and pushing, designed at Royal College of Art / Imperial College London, London