Israeli Nobel Laureate in Perth
10 March 2016
Level 1, 300 Murray Street
AICC(WA) and Edith Cowan University Annual Executive Lunch
Nobel Laureate Distinguished Prof Dan Shechtman, Department of Material Science & Engineering Technion, Israel
"Demographics, Entrepreneurship and the Future of the World"
The world demographics are changing rapidly in modern times and the need to deal with the consequences is urgent. The average number of children per woman in developed countries is too low to sustain a stable, economically advanced society and the solution is either to open the borders to waves of immigration or to encourage families to have more children. In the meantime, skilled entrepreneurs can fill the gap by starting hi-tech businesses with high return on investment and human capital.
Can technological entrepreneurship be motivated and taught so that generations of determined entrepreneurs will build up thriving economies? The clear answer to both questions is yes, but the process will take time and dedication. It all starts with education in general and scientific-technical education in particular. This is a long process, but there is a way to expedite the process – start with the already educated engineers and scientists. These are the first candidates to open entrepreneurial endeavors. They can make the difference, but need motivation, instruction and encouraging economic environment that foster creation of successful start-ups and these pioneering entrepreneurs can then serve as role models to others. The name of the game is motivation. If this nucleus of capable people are motivated toward entrepreneurship, a process can start that will make a huge difference in a life of a country. Living examples to countries that underwent this process are China, Israel, Singapore, South Korea and Turkey whose societies shifted from agrarian to industrial within several decades thanks to the spirit of entrepreneurship and the motivation to create high-tech industries led and guided by individual engineers and scientists.
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