Cairo to host the first regional Data-Driven Innovation Week

Feb 18, 2016

(CAIRO, 18 February 2016) – From 18 to 23 February 2016, Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) will organize in Cairo (Egypt) a full week of activities focused on data-driven innovation and digital entrepreneurship. The initiative is part of IDRC’s efforts to promote the use of data and technology in finding solutions to social and economic challenges in the Middle East and North Africa.

A wide range of activities will bring together over 300 students, policy-makers, academics and communication specialists from different countries across the region, including Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and United Arab Emirates.

Speaking ahead of the event launch, IDRC Regional Director in the MENA, Bruce Currie-Alder said: “In the past few years, we have witnessed a flourishing of the Arab start-up scene and the rise of young talented entrepreneurs in the region. Our event in Cairo is an attempt to support these local efforts and to raise the awareness on the benefits that data can bring to these emerging businesses; in being more effective, exploring new markets and even creating new products and services.”

The event will kick off on the 18th of February with a two-day data camp gathering students from different universities and young entrepreneurs from all over Egypt. On 21 and 22 February, a regional workshop will take place at Cairo University to discuss the status of data-driven innovation and digital entrepreneurship in the MENA region, identify best practices and draft recommendations for policies that foster data-driven innovation. The Canadian Ambassador to Egypt, Troy Lulashnyk, will inaugurate the workshop together with representatives of Cairo University and partner organizations. On 23 February, a data-rich communication training will take place to enable communication specialists in governments, NGOs and the media to produce and visualize more fact-based and multi-dimensional news and stories.

The Data-Driven Innovation Regional workshop in Cairo is a first-of-its-kind event in the Middle East and North Africa. It is organized in collaboration with the Embassy of Canada to Egypt, Cairo University, the United Nations Development Program (UNPD), the International Labor Organization (ILO) and the Information Technology Institute (ITI), which affiliated to the Egyptian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.

Connect to Data-Driven Innovation website:

Check the full Program and list of speakers

Take part in the discussion on Twitter: #DDIMENA #الداتا_الكبيرة

For media coverage and interviews please contact:

Ingy Sedky – Communications and Media Relations Officer (MENA), Email:  - Telephone: +20 2 33367051 (ext. 7136)

Fatma Elzahraa Yassin - Communications Analyst, UNDP, E-mail:  

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