The Innovation Imperative: Open Forum in Amman to Address Role of Entrepreneurship

12 May 2017

Micol Lucchi, Public Engagement, Tel. +41 (0) 22 869 1441, E-mail:

· The World Economic Forum is inviting the public to join a discussion with leading entrepreneurs and start-ups in the King Hussein Business Park (KHBP) in Amman, Jordan, on 18 May 2017

· In partnership with the King Abdullah II Fund for Development, the Forum is addressing the need to innovate and create jobs for a youthful population

· To participate in person, register for the Open Forum here.

Geneva, Switzerland, 14 May 2017 – For the first time, the World Economic Forum, together with the King Abdullah II Fund for Development, invites the public to join an Open Forum session on The Innovation Imperative at the King Hussein Business Park (KHBP) Main Auditorium. The Open Forum will take place in Amman on Thursday 18 May from 13.15 to 14.30. This special session was developed to give students, entrepreneurs, young professionals and the general public an opportunity to discuss the role of innovation in shaping a better future.

The session is in line with the World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa, taking place at the Dead Sea on 19-21 May under the theme Enabling a Generational Transformation. In connection with the meeting, the Forum is also presenting 100 Start-ups of the Arab World Shaping the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Join a panel of inspirational entrepreneurs and thinkers:

· Karim Kawar, President of Kawar Group, Jordan, and former ambassador to the United States from Jordan, and a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader

· Valentina Qussisiya, Chief Executive Officer of Abdul Hameed Shoman Foundation, Jordan

· Faisal Hakki, Chief Executive Officer of Oasis 500, Jordan

· Khadija Idrissi Janati, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of KMK Groupe, Morocco, and a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader

· Nour Khrais, ‏Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Maysalward, Jordan

· Introduced by Philipp Rösler, Head of Regional and Government Engagement, and Member of the Managing Board of the World Economic Forum

· Moderated by: Laith Al-Qassem, Chairman of Arabian Business Consultants for Development (ABCD), Jordan

· Social Media Facilitator: Khaled Al Ahmad (@Shusmo)

Innovation is no longer an option, but the only path to transformation in the Middle East and North Africa. Today, the Jordanian economy is dynamically seeking to anticipate and mitigate many challenges with the help of its only constant resource, its youthful population. It is imperative for innovation to thrive in the region to bring positive change.

To join the Innovation Imperative session in person, register here. The Open Forum will be held on Thursday 18 May at 13.15 - 14.30 (doors open at 12.45) at the King Hussein Business Park (KHBP) Main Auditorium, Amman, Jordan. This session will also be webcast live at

Following the success of the Open Forum sessions at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, the Forum is bringing its publicly accessible, open-debate format to a regional meeting for the first time. Since 2003, the Open Forum has brought together leaders from all walks of life: government officials, artists, civil society leaders, entrepreneurs and chief executive officers of multinational companies. The sessions are designed to engage a diverse global public and facilitate the sharing of a broad range of ideas, experiences and stories on pressing and controversial issues.

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