Sara Al Amiri | Minister of State for Advanced Sciences Image Credit: WAM

Dubai: Sarah Al Amiri, Minister of State for Advanced Technology, Chairwoman of the UAE Space Agency and EMM Science Lead, has been recognised as Time magazine’s top 100 emerging leaders for 2021.

The prestigious list revealed the next 100 most influential people in the world, which also included New Zealand Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall, #EndSARS activists Feyikemi Abudu and American singer-songwriter Phoebe Bridgers.

Taking to her official Twitter account on Thursday, Al Amiri wrote: “Thanks to TIME for naming me on their 100 Next list, it's a mark of recognition I accept on behalf of the entire Emirates Mars Mission team, many of whom deserve the accolade a great deal more than I.”

In the list, Time writer Jeffrey Kluger described the Hope Probe triumph as a landmark achievement that served as a global emissary for the UAE and its rapidly developing science and tech sector.


“Dreaming of going to Mars is easy; getting there is brutally hard. So it was no small thing when the Hope spacecraft from the United Arab Emirates’ space agency went into orbit around the Red Planet on February 9. It was no small thing either that the person whom experts cite as the most responsible for the UAE triumph was Sarah Al Amiri, the project’s lead scientist, heading a team that is 80 per cent women.”

Al Amiri's first job was at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre in Dubai in 2009 when she was employed to work on Dubai Sat-1, the first Emirati Earth observation satellite. Since then, she has rapidly rose through the ranks.

She was appointed minister of state for advanced technology in 2017, and became chairwoman of the Space Agency in August. Also last year, the BBC listed her as one of the 100 most inspiring and influential women of 2020.