The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) is leading the implementation of the “Promoting Refugee and Migrant Entrepreneurship in East Africa, the Andean Region and the Middle East” project in Uganda, among other countries, since 2018. Currently at its second phase, the project focuses on improving national, institutional and technical capacity in Uganda to implement entrepreneurship initiatives and adopt specific policy measures to promote socio-economic integration of refugees and migrants in the host economy. To this end, UNCTAD has undertaken a study to assess the inclusive nature of the entrepreneurship ecosystem. The study entailed surveying stakeholders in the ecosystem, mapping existing initiatives, and identifying opportunities and challenges. Building on this assessment and given its practical experience with policy formulation and implementation, UNCTAD aims to support national stakeholders in developing an action plan adapted to the Ugandan context. Working in close collaboration and coordination with national authorities and other stakeholders, UNCTAD therefore is organising a two-day capacity building workshop for policy makers and other stakeholders of Uganda’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.
The primary objective of the workshop is to strengthen the capacity of stakeholders in Uganda to design and implement entrepreneurship policies and initiatives that would foster the socio-economic integration of refugees and migrants into the local economies. The national workshop is also expected to deepen understanding of the FIVE priority areas of the Entrepreneurial Policy Framework (EPF) and the Policy Guide including optimisation of the regulatory framework, entrepreneurship education and skill development, technology exchange and innovation, access to finance, and awareness and networking. During the workshop, UNCTAD will work with Government of Uganda and key stakeholders to draw a national action plan that will support ongoing and planned interventions for strengthening inclusiveness of the entrepreneurship ecosystem.
Organization and Participation
The proposed workshop draws participation from Government Ministries, UN entities, refugee settlements, host communities, academia, research institutions, civil society organizations, business community, financial institutions, incubators, accelerators, and international development partners. The list of participants includes the stakeholders surveyed by the national assessment study. Forty participants drawn from the above entities will converge at a designated venue that is compliant with COVID-19 SOPs. Participants from UNCTAD Geneva will attend via a video link.
During the two-day period, sessions will begin at 9.00 a.m. and close by 5.00 p.m. UNCTAD staff will moderate the sessions with the support of national consultants based in Uganda. Prior to the workshop, participants will be asked to enroll in the massive online open course (MOOC) on “Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees” developed jointly by UNCTAD and UNITAR. The workshops will follow an interactive methodology to inspire discussion among stakeholders toward actionable recommendations in line with UNCTAD methodology applied at regional-level workshops. The workshop will also offer an opportunity to migrants and refugees express their voices on entrepreneurship.
The proposed workshop will lead to the development of an Action Plan elaborated by stakeholders in the ecosystem including public, private, academic, and civil society entities. Preparation of the Action Plan will be based on workshop outcomes with a focus on key issues arising from workshop deliberations, lessons learnt and recommendations.
During preparation of the Action Plan, consideration will be given to:
- Existing entrepreneurship policies developed by Government
- Implementation status of entrepreneurship policies in refugee/migrant hosting districts
- Factors affecting policy implementation and outcomes
- Lessons learned and knowledge management; what worked, what didn’t work, and why; distillation of what can be learnt from past mistakes to deploy better solutions
- Impact of programme interventions by ecosystem stakeholders
- Capacity limitations of Government institutions and other players in the entrepreneurship ecosystem
- Recommended capacity building strategies
The Action plan shall include specific targets, timelines and an Actor Mapping Matrix clearly specifying responsibilities of each stakeholder.
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Selahattin Selsah Pasali
Associate Economic Affairs Officer
Enterprise Branch, Division on Investment and Enterprise