Impressive win at ACIYLS 2023

From left: Tan Jing Jie, Yam Zi Ying and Jacynth Tham

Lee Kong Chian Faculty of Engineering and Science (LKC FES) Doctor of Philosophy (Engineering) student Tan Jing Jie, and Faculty of Information and Communication Technology (FICT) graduates Jacynth Tham Ming Quan and Yam Zi Ying claimed several wins at the ASEAN-China-India Youth Leadership Summit (ACIYLS) 2023, after winning the Sustainability Startathon: Country Rounds, the qualifying phase of the ACI Youth Leadership Summit.

The team, named “ThinkAFeature” won the Best Presentation Award and was selected to represent Malaysia to present at the Sustainability Forum. The team also emerged as the Top 15 Malaysia student representatives to present at the Singapore Global Submit for grand finals. In addition, they were also selected as the Top 3 Best Project Winners at the event.

The award ceremony took place on 24 September 2023 at Sunway University.

The team’s winning project was titled GreenDodo, a groundbreaking app aiming to tackle sustainability challenges, particularly in waste management, using AI technology. Through market research, targeting youths aged 18 to 25, the project found strong support, with 97% positive feedback, highlighting a need for financial incentives for sustainability actions. The app included features like the Carbon Stock Trading Platform, Recycle and Reward Programmes, and an AI chatbot for inclusivity. The project aims to revolutionise lifestyles by making sustainability profitable and integral. The team expressed their hope to gain support by engaging top venture capital firms and securing government grants in the future.

In the Sustainability Startathon: Country Rounds (virtual), a total of 100 teams from 12 economies gathered to compete. However, only 10 teams were chosen to advance to the final round. Subsequently, three projects were selected in the round, along with 15 Malaysian students for a sponsored summit; one project was chosen to be presented at the Sustainability Forum, representing Malaysia.

Tan Jing Jie, one of the team members, said that participating in the competition perfectly aligned with his goal of advancing his technical skills, especially in his PhD research areas focusing on Natural Language Processing (NLP) and AI chatbots. He saw it as an exceptional opportunity to apply and refine his expertise, pushing the boundaries of innovation while contributing to a real-world solution. The win brought him immense joy as well as a sense of accomplishment. He was also grateful for the opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals, meet field experts, and network with those who share his passion for technology and sustainability. “Overall, this winning would mark the beginning of new relationships, learning experiences, and personal growth,” he said.

The winning prize included a trophy, certificate, and a 7-day fully sponsored trip to Singapore, covering airfare, accommodation, meals, and petty cash. In addition, the winners received invitations to participate in Indoor and Outdoor Entrepreneurship and Sustainability exploration (“Sustainability Quest”), Sustainability Forum, Speed Mentoring, Sustainability Startathon and Networking Dinner.

From left: Jacynth Tham, Tan and Yam


ACIYLS 2023, organised by OSG Youth Alliance, aimed to gather young Asian leaders from across the region for a vibrant and collaborative future. The objectives of the summit included fostering cross-cultural understanding aiming to develop diverse and inclusive leadership across borders and cultures; promoting entrepreneurship to drive learning and development opportunities that energise the youth leaders of tomorrow, and advancing sustainability to transform cities and inspire communities as highlighted by the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

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