Photo: CIPE Staff
This year Heritage Foundation ranked Cambodia as 112th or “mostly unfree” in its 2016 Index of Economic Freedom. Though Cambodia’s management of public finances and trade have become notably more open and transparent, deep institutional and systemic challenges remain, in part due to weak property rights, pervasive corruption, and burdensome bureaucracy.
On the upside, Freedom House’s Freedom on the Net Index ranks Cambodia at 48th, partly free in regard to Internet freedom. Where traditional media is rigorously regulated, accessible social media and ICT apps present an opportunity for educating, advocating, and advancing positive reforms in Cambodia and the region more broadly.
CIPE, in tandem with Panoply Digital, a U.K.-based ICT for Development consulting firm, sought to seize this opportunity and advance the work of two partner organizations based in Cambodia. In its second training workshop in a series, CIPE and Panoply Digital presented tools for online research, professional development/open learning, communications, and online training courses to Silaka and the Cambodian Federation of Employers and Business Associations (CAMFEBA).
The tools and strategies outlined in this workshop are detailed in this month’s Economic Reform Feature Service article. In addition, CIPE has created a platform compiling resources for advocacy as well as membership development and services, financial management, and organizational management.
Stephanie Bandyk is a Program Assistant for Global Programs at CIPE.
P@SHA workshop with Jawwad Ahmed Farid (center) and Karachi School for Business & Leadership students.
What are the necessary steps to take an idea from conception into a commercial reality? How do you strategize and pitch a business idea to a potential investor? How do you select good talent and put together a team? According to CIPE partner Pakistan Software Houses Association for IT & ITES (P@SHA), young aspiring entrepreneurs in Pakistan are full of questions like these.
Entrepreneurs are desperately needed for Pakistan’s future. The country currently faces two significant challenges: a youth bulge and a slow growth.
Today, youth under the age of 30 make up an astonishing two-thirds of the total population. Coupled with this is a slow economy—Pakistan is experiencing limited GDP growth—and the business community and the public sector simply cannot provide enough jobs for employable youth. As a way to address these issues, P@SHA led an eight-month youth entrepreneurship program targeting university students in the technology field.
P@SHA President Jehan Ara speaking at the Pakistan IT & ITES Sector Business Agenda launch event in October 2009. (photo: CIPE)
CIPE has been supporting advocacy efforts of the Pakistan Software Houses Association (P@SHA). As a result of over 18 months of consultative efforts by P@SHA, legislative issues hampering the growth of the Information Technology (IT) and Information Technology Enabled Services (ITES) sector in Pakistan were identified. On October 5th, 2009, this process led P@SHA to prepare and launch the IT & ITES Sector Business Agenda for Pakistan.