While Israel has a thriving start-up ecosystem, the Arab community does not play a role in any significant way and therefore does not enjoy the resources and opportunities that it has to offer, despite the real progress made in high-school and higher education over the past decade. Based on research that MasarUp has conducted, the reasons for this under-representation in the ecosystem include a lack of awareness and familiarity with the success and progress that entrepreneurial endeavors can offer as well a feeling of discrimination by those that are attempting to participate.
The time is ripe to address these and other challenges associated with engagement with entrepreneurship, as Arab society displays a new openness regarding career options for the younger generation.
MasarUp will operate as an umbrella organization to bring about a shift in the engagement of Arab society with entrepreneurship. As such MasarUp will:
- Act as a coordinator and convenor of organizations involved in promoting and supporting entrepreneurship, and serve as a representative body
- Increase awareness of entrepreneurship amongst the younger generation and their parents through social and public media campaigns
- Create and maintain a knowledge base of the Arab entrepreneurial ecosystem
- Conduct research to identify barriers and initiate strategic interventions to address these barriers
- Develop policies and engage with government
- Promote innovation and entrepreneurship within the education system
- Address gaps in the ecosystem with regard to access to finance and access to markets for Arab entrepreneurs