Posts by Kristin Babbie Kelterborn
When Failure is Not an Option: Understanding – And Accelerating – the Success of Refugee Entrepreneurs
This World Refugee Day, the global community is experiencing the highest level of displacement on record. Though entrepreneurship can provide a route to livelihood for which resilient, community-oriented refugees are particularly suited, they often struggle to surmount barriers of language and discrimination, on top of the high failure rates that are typical of small businesses. Amy Gillett and Kristin Babbie Kelterborn at the William Davidson Institute share lessons from support programs helping refugees overcome tough odds to economically enrich their host countries.
Pitch Perfect: Five Tips for Designing Effective Business Pitch Competitions for International Entrepreneurs
The television show “Shark Tank,” in which entrepreneurs pitch their ideas to a panel of potential investors, has brought the pitch concept into popular culture. But in many emerging economies, not everybody is familiar with pitching. The William Davidson Institute's Amy Gillett and Kristin Babbie Kelterborn provide some lessons to help global entrepreneurship development leaders organize effective pitch competitions. Among their tips: Consider a more encouraging "dolphin tank" approach instead of a cut-throat shark tank, and work to leverage local entrepreneurial customs.
A Recipe for Understanding: How Food Entrepreneurship and Gastrodiplomacy are Bringing Syrian Refugees and Turks Closer
Nearly 6 million people have fled Syria's brutal civil war, with many settling in nearby Turkey. These refugees, as well as millions of other migrants around the world, often open restaurants and other eateries, drawing upon their cultural heritage to earn a living. The Livelihood Innovations through Food Entrepreneurship (LIFE) project was created to help these business owners – some 240 entrepreneurs will receive business support services offered at two food incubators.
Agriculture is the backbone of many sub-Saharan countries and, anecdotal evidence aside, it's not necessarily true that youth are not interested in it. But the sector won't reach its huge potential, and "agripreneurs" won't get the support they need, until certain government and private sector structures and processes are transformed.