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  • 1.Social Media, Employment and Entrepreneurship New Frontiers for the Economic Empowerment of Arab Youth?Produced by the Dubai School of Governments Governance and Innovation ProgramOctober 2012 In Partnership withElectronic copy available at: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2203122

2. Electronic copy available at: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2203122 3. Social Media, Employment and Entrepreneurship New Frontiers for the Economic Empowerment of Arab Youth?Produced by the Dubai School of Governments Governance and Innovation Program in Partnership with SAP MENAOctober 2012 4. About the Authors The Report is produced by Dubai School of Governments Governance and Innovation Program, and co-authored by Racha Mourtada and Fadi Salem:Fadi Salem is Director of the Governance and Innovation Program in the Dubai School of Government.Racha Mourtada is a Research Associate in the Governance and Innovation Program in the Dubai School of Government To contact the authors please direct emails to: Fadi.Salem@dsg.ac.ae; Racha.Mourtada@dsg.ac.ae The views expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the trustees, officers and other staff of the Dubai School of Government. 2012 Dubai School of GovernmentAcknowledgements The Governance and Innovation Program at the Dubai School of Government would like to thank SAP MENA for its forward looking support of policy research and the generous grant that facilitated conducting this critical and timely regional research. The authors wish to express their personal appreciation to Selim J. Edd, SAP MENA Government Relations, for his invaluable contribution to this project. The authors would also like to acknowledge the efforts of the following individuals in providing essential contributions, input and assistance into the report and its related materials: - Claire McPeak and Rob Jonkers from SAP - Jineesh M. Illath, Heba Shaaban from Dubai School of Government 4October 2012 5. Table of Contents Executive Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7. . .. About the Survey: Sample and Approach Introduction. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10. ..... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11. ....Regional Survey Findings. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20. ....Social media uses in business, enterprise and work culture - benefits, risks and drawbacks. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20. ....Social media, social entrepreneurship and education . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26. .... Shifting employment preferences since 2011: Impact of political and economic stability on social media, employment, entrepreneurship and society . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27. ....Conclusions: Exploring New Frontiers for Economic .... Empowerment in the Arab World . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33. Annex 1: Key Findings of the 4th Arab Social Media Report. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36. ....Annex 2: Taghreedat - Driving social media communities to .... promote online content production in Arabic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39. References. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43. ....Social Media, Employment and Entrepreneurship - New Frontiers for the Economic Empowerment of Arab Youth?5 6. 6October 2012 7. Executive Summary Since the spark of the popular movements across the Arab world, the critical debate about Arab youths political empowerment and the innovative uses of social media has been ongoing in policy and academic circles. Meanwhile, the Arab world continues to witness exponential growth in social media usage, merging online and offline identities among a significant percentage of young Arabs; this continues to play a critical role in shaping new dynamics in Arab societies. Almost two years later, many more questions beyond the impact on political empowerment of Arabs are increasingly being asked by policy makers and business leaders; the most critical of which is: Can this same phenomena also play a similar role in the economic empowerment of the most active group in society, the Arab youth? The Governance and Innovation Program (GIP) at the Dubai School of Government, in partnership with SAP MENA, conducted a regional eight country survey to measure perceptions on the impact of social media usage on economic empowerment, employment and entrepreneurship in Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. The report aims to provide decision and policy makers as well as businesses leaders with better understanding of the emerging opportunities and risks related to these changes; and explore the impact on policy making, business development and ultimately economic growth in the Arab region. More specifically, this exploratory field study aims to address the following key themes: A New Horizon? - What is the impact of social media growth on job creation, economic growth and support for entrepreneurship in the Arab region? The Policy Structure - How can governments adapt their developmental policies to this growth to better contribute to economic empowerment, citizen satisfaction and social inclusion? A New Wave of Innovation? - Can the emerging generation of empowered Arab youth translate into a sustainable culture of innovation? Ultimately, this report is intended to provoke thought leadership discussions in private and public sector decisions making circles in the surveyed countries, and the wider Arab region which shares many similarities on the cultural, economic and societal levels. Key findings of this survey provide evidence confirming that changes in the sense of empowerment is taking place within large segments in Arab societies. According to the survey findings, the following are the key conclusions on based on regional perceptions on the potential role for social media in these transformations: Impact on Employment Preferences: The economic and political instability throughout 2011 and 2012, and the related growth of social media usage in the region, clearly had an impact on the employment preferences of people in theAccording to the Arab Social Media Report Series produced by DSGs Governance and innovation Program in 2011/2012: http://www.ArabSocialMediaReport.com1Social Media, Employment and Entrepreneurship - New Frontiers for the Economic Empowerment of Arab Youth?7 8. region, and their readiness to pursue entrepreneurial opportunities. While no clear majority emerged in terms of preferences for a specific sector, a significant percentage of respondents stated that the events of the past year had affected their employment preference.Future Prospects: Creative technological solutions based on data-mining and social media have the potential to unleash the innovative ways to solve many of the growing unemployment problems in the region. Some of them are: o The Virtual Job Market: SocialValue for Businesses, Start-ups and Social Entrepreneurs: Social media is overwhelmingly perceived as an important tool for businesses in general, and specifically for start-ups and social enterprises. Moreover, it is a tool that is actively used by entrepreneurs in the Arab region.Perceptions of Key Benets: Across the region, the most beneficial aspect of social media for businesses is deemed to be its promotional and outreach capacity.Social Enterprises: Social media is seen as an important tool for social enterprises by an overwhelming majority of respondents across the region (89%).Social media and Education: Beyond its benefits for businesses and enterprise, social media is perceived as a necessary and even transformational tool for education.Social media as an Equalizer: Social media continues to be an equalizer across different gender and age groups, with majority of respondents regardless of their gender- seem to have the same perceptions about social media with regards to its potential for job creation, its benefits and drawbacks for business and enterprise.Drawbacks for Business: Negative connotations attributed to social media use in business largely center on concernsmedia is facilitating access to customized information about jobs and employment opportunities. In fact, 71% of survey respondents in the region state that they would rely on social media to find their next job. o Up-skilling: Social media can help young people bridge the gap between their qualifications and job market demands, and acquire the required skills for different positions. 84% of survey res