As part of its efforts to promote entrepreneurship and raise awareness about it in Palestine, PalThink for Strategic Studies has concluded a three-episode radio series on local radio station Zaman FM. The series discussed various topics related to entrepreneurship, as part of the “Reimagining the Reality of Entrepreneurship in the Lens of Palestinian Youth” project, in cooperation with Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom.
The project’s goal is to shed light on small projects, the reality of startups, entrepreneurship, and economic barriers facing Palestinian youth in the Gaza Strip. It aims to address and enhance human development through the production of research papers and training young people on entrepreneurial and leadership skills.
During the third and last episode of the series, Yahya Qaoud, political science and public policies researcher at PalThink said: “The project aims to enhance the opportunities and develop the skills of Palestinian youth. It was able to train the targeted group to develop ideas so that they can start their own businesses.”
“PalThink pays much attention to young people because the Palestinian society is a young one, and it suffers difficult conditions due to the division and its repercussions, in addition to the reality of the Palestinian economy and its dependence on the Israeli economy,” he said. “All of this has compounded the challenges facing youth. Therefore, PalThink works to encourage young people to generate new business ideas.”
The first episode of the series, aired on 13 October, in which economic and development affairs consultant Raed Helles and youth activists Ibrahim Al-Tarturi and Abdullah Al-Baba participated, talked about the promotion of microentrepreneurial projects.
It addressed the effects of the high population density of the Gaza Strip, the political division, and the ineffective educational curricula in schools and universities on unemployment rates. The participants talked about the importance of small projects considering the public sector’s inability to generate new jobs and saturation of the labor market.
As for the second episode, aired on 16 October, in which economic and development affairs consultant Mahmoud Issa and youth activists Sundus Sabra and Raneen Farajallah participated, it talked about the challenges facing small businesses in the Gaza Strip.
It discussed the concept of entrepreneurship, the qualities of entrepreneurs, the difference between entrepreneurial projects and small projects.
The participants discussed the causes that made pioneering projects much more important during the past years and the impact of the pioneering projects on opening new markets, stimulating the wheel of economic growth, and involving most groups of society in economic activity, especially the youth.
As for the third episode, aired on 20 October, in which political science and public policies researcher Yahya Qaoud and youth activists Mustafa Qanu’ participated, it was about the role of national policies in promoting youth entrepreneurial projects.
The episode talked about the decreasing percentage of youth in the Gaza Strip compared to 2005 due to migration. Therefore, decision-makers should hear the youth’s voices. The episode touched on the nature of the Palestinian business environment, where there is no huge capital or large projects. Rather, most of the projects in Gaza are small or medium.
The participants proposed several solutions to address entrepreneurial projects’ problems, starting with establishing a Palestinian entrepreneurship observatory, enacting modern laws that support entrepreneurship, and developing the educational system in schools and universities that line with the labor market.