MiSK Foundation

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from MiSK)
Jump to navigation Jump to search
MiSK Foundation
مؤسسة الأمير محمد بن سلمان بن عبدالعزيز الخيرية
Misk Foundation Logo.png
FounderMohammed Bin Salman
Key people
Bader Al kahail

Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Foundation (the MiSK Foundation) (Arabic: مؤسسة الأمير محمد بن سلمان بن عبدالعزيز الخيرية‎) is a non-profit foundation established by Saudi crown prince Mohammad bin Salman in 2011 to develop and empower Saudi youth to become participants in the future economy. MiSK specifically focuses on four key areas: education, creative and digital media, technology, and culture and arts. It pursues this agenda both through its own programs, and through partnerships with local and global organisations.[1]


Created in 2011, the MiSK foundation was initiated by Mohammad bin Salman, then advisor to the Governor of Riyadh. The foundation aims to increase economic opportunities in Saudi society, where seventy percent of the population is under the age of 30, in step with the Vision 2030 national restructuring plan.[2][3]

The MiSK Foundation launched the Tweeps Forum in 2013, an annual networking event connecting the Saudi youth with social media leaders, gathering speakers such as Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ivanka Trump, and top executives from Twitter.[4][5]

In October 2015, the MiSK Foundation was one of the main partners of the 9th UNESCO Youth Forum in Paris.[6] In September 2016, the two organisations signed a Framework Agreement to collaborate on the development of youth, education, emerging technologies, culture, and science.[7] The 7th International Forum of NGOs was held in Riyadh in May 2017 in partnership with the MiSK foundation.[8]

The MiSK Global Forum started in 2016 and was initially conceived as a two-day forum, with a focus on entrepreneurship and innovation.[9] From 25 to 27 November 2016, the MiSK Hackathon connected more than 100 youths from London and Riyadh by satellite in a competition broadcast over two days.[10]

In April 2017, the Foundation launched a campaign with Google named We Are All Online, an initiative to share best practices in the promotion of online safety for Saudi youth, one of the most connected nations worldwide.[11] In the same month, the Foundation became a member of the MIT Media Lab consortium.[12]

In September 2017, the MiSK Foundation organised a New York-based youth-oriented forum, the MiSK-UNDP Youth Forum, that drew 400 participants and raised awareness on ways that Saudi and Arab youth could further involve themselves with the issues of counter extremism and the refugee crisis.[13]

In November 2018, a month after the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation pulled funding to the foundation. The decision ended a joint initiative between the Gates Foundation and the MiSK Foundation called the MiSK Grand Challenges, which made grants to organisations around the world working to create innovative solutions to development challenges. In 2017, the Gates Foundation had committed $5 million to the MiSK Grant Challenges. “Jamal Khashoggi’s abduction and murder are extremely troubling,” said the Gates Foundation in a statement.[14][15]


The name of the Foundation comes from "misk" ("musk" in English). The symbolism is one of generosity and benevolence in that this ancient perfume is worn by one person, while simultaneously engulfing those around them.[16]

The Foundation’s work is focused on education, culture and media. It provides contributions to youth development, with a spotlight on technology and the arts, in order to build a knowledge-based economy.[2] The MiSK Foundation also tackles problems related to terrorism by convening events both in Saudi Arabia and internationally, including the annual Tweeps Forum and the MiSK UNDP Youth Forum.[17]

MiSK Art Institute[edit]

The MiSK Art Institute, launched in 2017, is the artistic branch of the MiSK Foundation.[18] The objective of the institute is to become the "leading platform for grassroots cultural production, diplomacy and exchange" in Saudi Arabia. Ahmed Mater serves as its executive director.[19]

In early 2018, the Foundation announced the expansion of the MiSK Art Institute, including new galleries, creative spaces, meeting spaces, workshops, and educational programs. The Institute also included plans for a pavilion at the 2018 Venice Biennale, a New York Arab Art Festival, an exchange program with California.[20]


  • November 2017: Recipient of the $1 million Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Knowledge Award[21]
  • December 2016: Arab Social Media Influencers Award[22]



  1. ^ https://www.bloomberg.com/company/announcements/misk-foundation-and-bloomberg/
  2. ^ a b Elizabeth Dickinson (8 May 2017). "Q&A: Saudi nonprofit MiSK paves the way for youth". Devex.com. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  3. ^ Ben Hubbard (16 February 2016). "Young Saudis See Cushy Jobs Vanish Along With Nation's Oil Wealth". Nytimes.com. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  4. ^ Mallory Shelbourne (21 May 2017). "Ivanka Trump says social media 'empowers the people'". Thehill.com. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  5. ^ "Abdullah bin Zayed attends 4th Tweeps Forum in Riyadh". Emiratespressrelease.com. 18 April 2016. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  6. ^ "Main sponsors". Unesco.org. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  7. ^ "UNESCO and MiSK Foundation join forces for knowledge societies". Unesco.org. 14 September 2016. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  8. ^ ""Youth and their Social Impact" – 7th International Forum of NGOs in official partnership with UNESCO". Unesco.org. 28 April 2017. Retrieved 8 April 2018.
  9. ^ "Two-Day MiSK Global Forum in Riyadh Showcases Ideas of Innovation And Global Culture to Empower Youth". Sustg.com. 15 November 2016. Retrieved 7 April 2018.
  10. ^ "Data-Driven Blood Bank Donation Invention Scoops $100k Top Prize at Inaugural UK/Saudi MiSK Hackathon". Prnewswire.com. 27 November 2016. Retrieved 7 April 2018.
  11. ^ Matt Smith (18 November 2013). "Young Saudis getting creative on YouTube". Reuters.com. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  12. ^ Grif Peterson; Yarden Katz (30 March 2018). "Elite universities are selling themselves – and look who's buying". Theguardian.com. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  13. ^ Mina Al Oraibi (16 September 2017). "Youth take on global challenges at Saudi-UN forum". Thenational.ae. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  14. ^ Roberts, Paul (2 November 2018). "Gates Foundation cuts ties with Saudi charity over journalist's murder". Seattle Times.
  15. ^ Denny, Andrew (4 November 2018). "Gates Foundation Pulls Funding From Saudi Charity Over Khashoggi Murder". Inquisitr.
  16. ^ "About MiSk". Misk.org.sa. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  17. ^ "Youth has its say". Pressreader.com. 17 September 2017. Retrieved 8 April 2018.
  18. ^ Anna Somers Cocks (8 December 2017). "Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince launches institute to promote art in the Middle East". Theartnewspaper.com. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  19. ^ Siegfried Forster (12 October 2017). "L'art contemporain saoudien, une bonne surprise exposée à l'Unesco". Rf1.fr (in French). Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  20. ^ James Tarmy (29 January 2018). "Saudi Arabia Is Planning a Massive, New Arts Center". Bloomberg.com. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  21. ^ "MiSK Foundation honored with Dubai knowledge award". Alarabiya.net. 22 November 2017. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  22. ^ "MISK Foundation awarded in Arab Social Media Influencers". Alarabiya.net. 13 December 2016. Retrieved 13 April 2018.

External links[edit]