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Forum Explores Economic Implications for Egyptian Uprising

Paul Reynolds, Howard Hoffman Distinguished Scholar of Management and Entrepreneurship, addresses the audience during the Feb. 8 discussion.

GWSB professors Salah Hassan, chair and professor in the Department of Marketing; Paul Reynolds, Howard Hoffman Distinguished Visiting Scholar of Management and Entrepreneurship; George T. Solomon, associate professor of management; Ayman El Tarabishy, director of  the International Council for Small Business and assistant research professor of management; and Paul M. Swiercz, professor of management, gathered Feb. 8 for a timely discussion of the political unrest in Egypt and the economic implications and underpinnings of recent events.

Hassan opened the seminar with sobering statistics. He cited a 25 percent unemployment rate in Egypt, coupled with a high percentage of that population being aged 25 or younger as the catalyst for the revolution among Egyptian youth.

“The business model of managing government enterprise in Egypt collapsed,” Hassan said. “It defied the myth of Egypt as the most stable government in the Middle East.”

Reynolds introduced the theme of Egyptian entrepreneurship, and noted that many women are excluded from business, and thus entrepreneurship.

This creates a critical problem according to Solomon, who deemed young people and women critical for entrepreneurship, and entrepreneurship essential for economic development.

“Youth unemployment and the frustration of the youth in Egypt is the elephant in the room,” El Tarabishy said.

Swiercz emphasized the need for change in Egyptian economic development and concluded that Egyptians have to invent their own kind of capitalism with a focus on entrepreneurship.

Posted by gwsb on February 10, 2011 | Filed under: GWSB News.


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