Social Media Empowering MENA Businesses To Innovate Like Never Before

Youth’s Adoption Of Technology Make It An “Imperative” For Success; Pioneering Study Reveals 86 Per Cent Believe It Empowers Entrepreneurs

DUBAI, United Arab EmiratesSocial media literacy has well and truly transitioned from fringe concern to a MENA business must-have, according to the most comprehensive survey of its kind ever conducted.

According to a study by Dubai School of Government’s Governance and Innovation Program and SAP focusing on Arab youth, 86 per cent of respondents believe social media empowers entrepreneurs. Acclaim was forthcoming from 90 per cent for its potential to boost branding and marketing, from 86 per cent for the ability to tap into wider markets and from 85 per cent for its customer engagement credentials. 84 per cent believed social media could inspire entrepreneurial spirit within a company.
The study also found that 81 per cent agreed that national social media policies would facilitate a better use of social media in the workplace.

“Respondents have been overwhelmingly positive about the role of social media. Despite having few stable economies in the region today, the most active part of the Arab population, its youth, are increasingly feeling empowered. Our on-going research over the past two years has shown that more than 50 million Arabs are actively connected through social media and primarily use the platforms to change social and business realities in their countries,” said Fadi Salem, Director of the Governance and Innovation Program, DSG.

The study, which examined the effectiveness of social media in promoting social advancement, job creation and business growth across the Arab region, collated data from close to 5,000 respondents in Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Lebanon, Oman, Egypt and Jordan.

“Social media is no longer a curiosity but undeniable business imperative,” said Sam Alkharrat, Managing Director, SAP MENA.

“It is crucial that business-leaders adapt accordingly. Constructive dialogue across workplaces, markets and among individuals – combined with the unprecedented ability to gather, analyse and act on data in real-time – is an immensely powerful and influential opportunity to unlock previously unthinkable levels of innovation.”

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About the Dubai School of Government

The Dubai School of Government (DSG) is a research and teaching institution focusing on public policy in the UAE and the region. Established in 2005 under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai, DSG aims to promote good governance through enhancing the institutional capacity for effective public policy. Toward this goal, the Dubai School of Government also collaborates with regional and global institutions in delivering its research and training programs. In addition, the School organizes policy forums and international conferences to facilitate the exchange of ideas and promote critical debate on public policy.

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