Technology creation competition begins in Yemen [Archives:2008/1175/Local News]

July 24 2008

By: Yemen Times
ADEN, July 19 – A competition promoting digital and online entrepreneurship in the Arab world launched Saturday in Aden, making Yemen the fifth Arab country to join the project, which is sponsored by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia and Aden ICT Incubator, a Yemeni tech group. The Digital Arabic Content Competition began in 2007 to encourage the building of an Arabic digital content and technology industry in the greater Middle East. In addition to Yemen, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan and Syria also are participating in the competition.Aden University's Faculty of Management professor Yahya Mohammed Al-Rewi explains that the Western Asia commission initiated the competition in the member countries in an effort to select the best projects to enhance and develop Arabic web technology, such as e-learning and e-government web sites.

The competition committee seeks out those businesspeople and recent university graduates with innovative ideas for software development and technology businesses to join the competition. The Western Asia commission will fund the winning proposals, which will be turned into viable, working businesses.

The judging committee is comprised of commission employees and representatives of numerous technology development groups such as Berytech in Lebanon, Palestine Information & Communications Technology Incubator, Jordan Innovation Center, Syria's Information & Communication Technology Incubator and Aden Information & Communication Technology Incubator here in Yemen.

At a workshop in Syria for incubator networks in the Middle East and North Africa, participants discussed developing business management and supporting technological innovations in the region through collaboration between the incubators. They also welcomed establishing the Aden Information & Communication Technology Incubator, which opened recently.

The workshop where the competition was announced was organized by the Syrian Science Information Association and held in Damascus June 3-5 with the attendance of more than 200 experts and representatives from 27 incubators in 14 countries – Syria, Jordan, Palestine, Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Mauritania, Turkey, Iran, Bahrain, Qatar and Yemen.

Syrian Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Al-Dardari hosted the workshop, discussing international support for technology innovation and business management. The event also promoted these incubators and new digital businesses as a way to help promote sustainable economic development and provide job opportunities in the Middle East and North Africa.