For information only - not an official document
12 November 2014
Re-issued as received
Fostering entrepreneurial youth focus of UNIDO conference in Vienna
VIENNA, 11 November (United Nations Industrial Development Organization) - A three-day conference on how education systems and the private sector can most actively promote entrepreneurial attitudes and talent in youth began today at the headquarters of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).
The event, organized by UNIDO with the support of the government of Japan, provides a platform for policymakers, practitioners, researchers and business representatives to discuss approaches to developing young people's attitudes, skills and knowledge for an entrepreneurial society. The knowledge-exchange involving more than 100 participants from over 50 countries is expected to help governments to develop and improve entrepreneurship curricula and learning initiatives.
Addressing the opening of the conference, Taizo Nishikawa, Deputy to the Director General of UNIDO, told participants, "Today's youth are tomorrow's drivers of entrepreneurial activity in their communities, regions and countries."
Nishikawa stressed that entrepreneurship matters for inclusive and sustainable industrial development, stating, "Entrepreneurship is an inclusive process that enables the bottom billion, women and men, in rural as well as urban areas, to climb up the wealth ladder."
Noting that by 2020, some 600 million jobs will need to be created in order to absorb the world's growing young population, Nishikawa said, "It is imperative to establish an enabling policy environment now so that children and youth can benefit from investments in education, employment and livelihood creation that will allow them to become productive adults today and in the future."
In his keynote address, Alain Fayolle, Professor at the EM Lyon Business School in France, said, "Fostering entrepreneurial youth means changing educational systems and changing institutions through public policies."
Fayolle said that education can develop entrepreneurial mindsets and entrepreneurial capabilities, while institutional changes through public policies can develop interest in entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial intentions, increase perceptions of the feasibility of entrepreneurship, and remove institutional barriers to entrepreneurship for young people.
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