July 17

Protecting Young Startups During COVID-19

By Kanni Wignaraja

From the way youth see it, business as usual just won’t cut it. Consider the staggering statistics: According to a survey done in 2014 by the World Economic Forum’s Partnering Against Corruption Initiative and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, 72 percent of millennials –between 18 and 34 – believe corruption is holding back their country. An equal number think it is causing lost opportunities for their generation.

Not much has changed since that survey was done, but now add to this mix the spectre of COVID-19. One potential risk is an increase in corruption and fraud, further affecting already weakened economies. Young social entrepreneurs are particularly at risk from these threats. If they are not equipped with tools and guidance on how to succeed with integrity, in a difficult business environment, our economies will be poorer for it.

The Asia-Pacific region is home to more than 60 percent of the world’s youth, about 700 million young people. It is estimated that they account for half of the jobless people in the region. Entrepreneurship offers a way out, and many are already taking this route.

Photo courtesy of Mimi Thian.

Source: UNDP (link opens in a new window)

business development, global development, startups