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News
11.09.2019
EEF 2019 Looks at Prospects for Youth Entrepreneurship Development

As part of the Innosocium Lab programme, the Roscongress Foundation’s Building Trust platform hosted a discussion on supporting youth entrepreneurship as a key factor of economic development. The promotion of the youth business initiative is a priority for the Roscongress Foundation’s social platform and the Innosocium Foundation for Social Development. The discussion was joined by Svetlana Chupsheva, General Director of the Agency for Strategic Initiatives; Vadim Zhivulin, Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation; Elena Marinina, Deputy CEO of the Roscongress Foundation and Director of the Innosocium Foundation; Tatyana Mineyeva, Commissioner for Entrepreneurs Rights Protection in Moscow; and Alexey Rybnikov, Director of the Analytics Center for CIS with EY.

In addition to experts, the discussion was attended by the winners of the DevService hackathon, which was held by the Innosocium Foundation with the support of the Roscongress Foundation and the Agency for Strategic Initiatives (ASI) in August this year. A hackathon is a design sprint-like event in which computer programmers and others involved in software development, including graphic designers, interface designers and others collaborate intensively on software projects. The global goal of the event is to create a single platform to simplify business procedures for young entrepreneurs. The competition participants were offered to find an original idea of any service to simplify the conduct of business and to assemble a team ready to finalize this service and subsequently participate in building the platform. Both teams and individual participants aged 16–30 were allowed to compete in the hackathon. In total, more than 200 teams from 18 Russian cities made it to the finals, who were invited to the ‘Boiling Point’ teamwork space to finalize their projects within 24 hours.

«We have created an infrastructure and support institutions for the development of social entrepreneurship, volunteerism, and NPO support, which are aimed at promoting social activity among young people. But as far as entrepreneurship is concerned, there are a lot of barriers. We have a lot of guys who want to do business, not volunteering. We must give them such an opportunity. Together with the Innosocium Foundation, we agreed to create a job exchange, taking into account the application offered by the guys as a result of the past hackathon, which allows us to verify the reputation of potential employers on the platform and to issue a legal permit for parents to employ their child. And we will definitely ensure his or her safety and give guarantees for a social contract,» said the head of ASI Svetlana Chupsheva.

The DevService hackathon was a logical continuation of the work started within the framework of the Innosocium Laboratory at SPIEF 2019. The winners of the competition have not only come up with effective and creative solutions, but, most importantly, they are understandable to the end users — young people.

«Supporting hackatons conducted jointly with the ASI is a new focus for the Innosocium Foundation, which was established by the Roscongress Foundation to support important social initiatives in Russia. The idea was born a few months ago during the St. Petersburg Economic Forum with a view to using the opportunities of the Roscongress Foundation for the development of youth entrepreneurship in the country. Our goal is to create a platform for large businesses and young people to interact at the most important business events held by Roscongress in Russia. This can include mentoring, grant-making and direct project financing. At the same time, we place special emphasis on working with the regions. That is why we brought the winners of the competition from all over the country to Vladivostok,» said Elena Marinina, Deputy CEO of the Roscongress Foundation and Director of the Innosocium Foundation.

The EEF 2019 discussion was followed by the roundtable meeting ‘Mentor Lounge for Young Entrepreneurs’, featuring a one-on-one session between business experts and DevService hackathon winners, where entrepreneurs shared their success stories and talked with students about possible ways to support entrepreneurship and youth through technology platforms. A roadmap and a plan to create a single platform for young entrepreneurs will be developed based on the results of the event.

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