Dr. Hayat Sindi

Dr. Hayat Sindi

Founder & President, I2nstitute

Hayat Sindi is the Founder and President of i2nstitute. Hayat was born in Makkah, Saudi Arabia and is one of the world’s leading biotechnologists.

As a child she was inspired by great scientists who changed the world. She left Saudi Arabia in her teens and worked against the odds to become the first female from the Gulf to earn a PhD in biotechnology, studying at King’s College London, Cambridge University, MIT and Harvard. Hayat was a Visiting Scholar at Harvard University for 5 years, and a co-founder of Diagnostics For All, which offers cost-effective point-of-care diagnostic tools enabling the treatment of the 60% of people living beyond the reach of medical infrastructures. She has been a PopTech fellow in both Science and Social Innovation, advancing her longstanding goal to more closely link science and social impact. Her dream is that i2 will make stories like hers less exceptional and more possible for every young innovator.


  • Member of the British Top Young Researchers in the House of Commons.
  • Awarded the Young Professional Award by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Arab Student Organization (MIT-ASO). (2006)
  • Selected to address King Abdullah Ben Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia at the National Dialogue Forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
  • Hayat’s Diagnostics For All business team won first place in Harvard Business School’s Business Plan Contest in the social enterprise track, and first place in MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition in the same year. This is the first time in history that the same team won first place in both competitions in the same year. (2008)
  • Received the prestigious Prince Khalid Award for Dr. Sindi’s innovative approach to the sciences. (2010)
  • Named a 2009 and 2010 PopTech Social Innovation Fellow. This is the first time in the history of the organization that Poptech awarded a Poptech Science Fellowship to the same person in two consecutive years (2009, 2010)
  • Selected to be an Emerging Explorer with National Geographic’s Emerging Explorers Program. (2011)
  • Named one of 150 Fearless Women by Newsweek/The Daily Beast (2012)
  • Named Global Ambassador for Vital Voices (2012)
  • Named number 9 out of 100 of the Most Powerful Arab Women by CEO magazine and number 3 from Most powerful Saudi Arabian Women.
  • Received Outstanding Contribution to Medicine award From Sheikh Lubna Minister of Trade UAE (2012).
  • Awarded The Honorary Global Thinkers Forum Award of Excellence in Science (2012).