Expo 2020 Through My Eyes


The Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum International Photography Awards (HIPA), in collaboration with the Aqdar World Summit (AWS) and National Geographic Arabic Magazine (NGAM), invites all professional and amateur photographers to take part in the ‘Expo 2020 Through My Eyes’ photography competition. A competition promoting the fourth year of the Aqdar World Summit held under the theme ‘Positive Global Citizenship’.

The forum takes place at Expo 2020, Dubai, whose main theme ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’ ties in perfectly with Aqdar World Summit’s slogan of ‘Nourishing Minds, Flourishing Nations’ and their aim to help empower communities to build a world of security, tolerance, peace and coexistence.

The competition encourages photographers to showcase their creativity and capture ‘Positive Global Citizenship’ at Expo 2020 Dubai: be it in the country pavilions or its main districts, through delegates meeting for business, children playing in the parks or even connections made amongst visitors or families having a meal together; The possibilities are endless…

Participants should submit their photographs based on the following categories:

  • Expo 2020 Architectural Innovation
  • The Spirit of EXPO 2020

Winners will receive cash prizes totaling AED 50,000, along with their images displayed at the Fazaa Hall in the Ministry of Interior’s Pavilion at Expo 2020. A selection of finalists’ images will also be part of this exhibition.


Expo 2020 Architectural Innovation

Expo 2020, Dubai is an architectural masterpiece with components brought to Dubai from all over the world. In every nook and corner, you will find unique photo opportunities and architectural achievements to capture. Creatively highlight the architectural essence of Expo 2020, Dubai to audiences unable to attend.

The Spirit of EXPO 2020

Tolerance, diversity, communication, fun, technology, food, events and the list goes on. All these are features that demonstrate the positive spirit of global citizenship that Expo 2020, Dubai and its organizers strive to achieve in the minds of visitors and participants alike. You, as a photographer, see a distinctive world behind your lenses. We invite you to tell us your stories in a way that represents the spirit of Expo 2020, Dubai to you.

Rules & Regulations


By participating, you understand, acknowledge and fully, irrevocably and unconditionally agree to abide and be bound by the following rules:

1. The competition is open for online submissions only through the registration page available on: www.hipa.ae

2. Submissions will be accepted from 12:30 on 27th October 2021 until 24:00 on 31st December 2021 - UAE standard time (i.e. GMT +4). No submissions will be accepted after that time.

3. Participants must be individuals aged 18 years and over, at the time of their submission.

4. You further understand and agree that Aqdar World Summit (AWS) National Geographic Arabic Magazine (NGAM) x HIPA reserve the right and will automatically and without further notice discard any photo(s) that are found to be submitted by a participant that is below eighteen (18) years old at the time of the submission.


5. You may submit one (1) photo in each relevant category of the competition. You must provide a title and description for each photo submitted.

6. The same photo must not be submitted in more than one (1) category. Any photo submitted in more than one (1) category will be discarded from the competition.

7. Submitted photo must have an original file in JPEG format, with high quality and resolution, of a minimum 3 MB in size, the minimum of the longest edge should be no less than 2000 pixel and the quality no less than 300dpi.

8. Submission(s) from mobile phones and drones are allowed, not be less than 3 MB in size and must be suitable for printing.

9. You are kindly requested to upload the original photo(s) (RAW) or the photo(s) without any editing on the time of submitting the photo(s) to the competition.

10. All submitted photo(s) must not contain any tag(s), signature(s), initial(s), frame, border(s), logo(s) or any other references and/or marks added by the participant.

11. Basic technical editing of the photo(s) is acceptable, provided that any such editing does not affect the authenticity and/or genuineness of the photo(s). Advanced editing used to create illusions, deceptions and/or manipulations; including compositing and creative retouching of the photo(s) is prohibited.

12. AWS x NGAM x HIPA preserves the right to assess and discard from the competition any submitted photo, contrary to the foregoing.

13. Photos that portray or otherwise include inappropriate and/or offensive contents, including nudity, violence and/or any other contents deemed to be contrary to the UAE religious, cultural and/or public morals traditions and practices will be disqualified.


14. The winner(s) will be contacted by HIPA and Aqdar World Summit and must provide their bank account details and personal details within seven (7) days from request received. The cash money prize(s) will be paid to each winner within a period of two (2) months following the announcement of the competition's results.

15. AWS x NGAM x HIPA judging panel has the right, at its absolute discretion, to turn down or reject any photo(s) or submission(s) without having to give any notice or explanation to the relevant participant.

16. Any federal, state/ provincial/ territorial, and/or local taxes, fees and surcharges and taxes (whether foreign or domestic, and including income tax) on any prize that may be awarded to you under the competition will be solely paid by you.

17. The decision of AWS x NGAM x HIPA judging panel is final and binding on all participants in respect to all matters relating to the competition.


18. Submitted photo(s) must be a single work of original material created and/or taken by you, must not contain any materials owned or controlled by a third party for which you have not obtained a license, permission or approval to use, must not infringe the copyright, trademark, moral rights, rights of privacy/publicity or intellectual property rights of any person or entity.

19. Upon reaching the final stage of judging, you grant AWS x NGAM x HIPA, a perpetual, worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty free, sub-licensable right and license to use, publish, reproduce, display, perform, adapt, modify, create derivative works, distribute, have distributed, print, promote your submitted photo(s), in whole or in part, in any form, in all media forms now or hereafter known, anywhere in the world for any purpose, related to the contest, the publication in AWS, NGAM and HIPA promotional digital and/or printed materials and formats broadcast such as on magazines, printed leaflet and brochures, website and/or through other public online feeds, promoting subsequent contests and/or the work of AWS, NGAM and HIPA generally.

20. You must obtain, solely bear the cost for, and provide AWS x NGAM x HIPA within seven (7) calendar days of any request to do so, with any or all of the following:

a) A signed written consent, release and/or permission of each and every identifiable individual person(s) appearing in your submitted photo(s), clearly authorizing you to use their picture or likeness for submitting the photo(s) in the manner contemplated by the competition, and authorizing AWS x NGAM x HIPA to reproduce, distribute, display, and create derivative works of the entry(s) for all purposes, in any media now or hereafter known.

b) Please click here to download the draft of the Model Release Form;

c) A signed written license from the copyright owner of any sculpture, artwork, or other copyrighted material that appears in your submitted photo(s), authorizing AWS x NGAM x HIPA to reproduce, distribute, display, and create derivative works of the relevant entry(s) for all purposes, in any media now or hereafter known;

d) A signed written license from the owner of any private property included in your submitted Photo(s), authorizing AWS x NGAM x HIPA to reproduce, distribute, display, and create derivative works of the relevant entry(s) for all purposes, in any media now or hereafter known; and

e) A signed written license or release letter from a person who has the right or is able to assert any right over the photo(s) (e.g. employer, agency, etc.) authorizing AWS x NGAM x HIPA to reproduce, distribute, display, and create derivative works of the relevant entry(s) for all purposes, in any media now or hereafter known; and

f) click here to download the draft of the Release form.

g) If you have been announced as a winner of the competition (in any category), you grant to AWS x NGAM x HIPA, a perpetual, worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty free, sub-licensable right and license to use, publish, reproduce, display, perform, adapt, modify, create derivative works, distribute, have distributed, promote your winning photo(s), in whole or in part, in any form, in all media forms now or hereafter known, anywhere in the world and for any purpose, including but not limited to: display at a potential exhibition of winners, and/or online highlighting entries or winners of the competition, and promoting the work of AWS x NGAM x HIPA generally.


21. You hereby hold harmless, release, indemnify and discharge AWS x NGAM x HIPA and its partners, affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising agencies, agents and their employees, officers and representatives from all liability, claims, judgments, demands, controversies, agreements, damages, actions and causes of action whatsoever, arising out of or related in any way to the photo(s), the competition or the conduct of the competition and the acceptance and use, misuse, or possession of any prize awarded, whether in law or in equity, no matter what the cause or nature, and you further waive any claims that you may state or assert against AWS x NGAM x HIPA in association with the competition or any of its associated activities, or in any way related to or resulting from the photo(s), competition even if such injury or claims results from or is caused by the negligence or gross negligence of AWS x NGAM x HIPA, in whole or in part. You further agree to indemnify and hold harmless AWS x NGAM x HIPA from any claim arising out of your participation in the competition including, without limitation, all claims brought or asserted by any third party as a result of any injury or loss that you or they may sustain in any way associated with your participation in the competition.

22. If AWS x NGAM x HIPA, at its sole discretion, is of the opinion that you have breached any of the rules, we have the right to disqualify you from the competition, and in such circumstances you must re-pay to AWS x NGAM x HIPA all costs undertaken in relation to your submission(s) and participation in the competition, including but not limited to (if and to the extent applicable) any travel costs incurred, and re-pay the competition prize money and return any trophies or certificates at your own cost.

23. Under no circumstance will AWS x NGAM x HIPA be liable for any:

a) lost, late, misdirected, stolen, illegible or incomplete submissions;

b) error, omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay in operation or transmission, communications line failure, theft or destruction or unauthorized access to, or alteration of, submitted photo(s);

c) problems, failures or technical malfunction of any telephone network or lines, computer online systems, servers, providers, computer equipment, software, email, players or browsers, on account of technical problems or traffic congestion on the internet, at any website, or on account of any combination of the foregoing;

d) incorrect or inaccurate information, caused by any of the equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the competition or by any technical or human error which may occur in the processing of the photo(s) and/or the submissions; and/or

e) injury or damage to any participant or to any computer related to, resulting from or in connection with the competition.

24. If, for any reason, the competition is not capable of being conducted as anticipated, due to computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other causes beyond the control of AWS x NGAM x HIPA, which corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of the competition, we reserves the right at its sole discretion to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the competition as deemed appropriate, disqualify any participant, and/or select winners from all eligible photo(s) submitted prior to the termination, cancellation, modification or suspension. AWS x NGAM x HIPA reserves the right to correct any typo-graphical, printing, computer programming or operating errors at any time.


The Competition, your Submission(s) and the Rules shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the Emirate of Dubai and the applicable federal laws of the United Arab Emirates, and any aspects or disputes arising out of or in connection with the Competition and/or your Submission(s) will be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Dubai courts (as established by Law No. (3) of 1992 and Law No. (13) of 2016).

A prize distribution ceremony will take place on February, 2022.

The exhibition of winning and shortlisted photos will be displayed in the Fazaa Hall within the Ministry of Interior pavilion at Expo 2020.

Prize Money

The Spirit of EXPO 2020

Position Prize Money
1st AED 15,000
2nd AED 10,000
3rd AED 7,000

Expo 2020 Architectural Innovation

Position Prize Money
1st AED 8,000
2nd AED 6,000
3rd AED 4,000