Islamabad Statement – Opportunity Pakistan

Opportunity Pakistan

development of social entrepreneurship and innovation

The Commission, convened by i-genius, comprising 15 members from UK, Italy, Australia and Pakistan, visited Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and Punjab to ascertain the opportunities and challenges facing the development of social entrepreneurship and innovation. In understanding its work, the Commission was mindful of the positive changes taking place such as the historic transfer of power from one democratically elected government to another, the talent residing amongst young people, the growing empowerment of women and the long tradition of social giving.

The Commission was impressed by the optimism and resilience of all those it encountered in both urban and rural communities, but it does not underestimate the enormous hurdles Pakistan faces in overcoming corruption and division within its society, which are the primary barriers to fulfilling its potential.

Social entrepreneurs are people who create businesses to promote social or environmental improvement.

The agenda for social innovation and entrepreneurship in Pakistan and beyond is to build sustainable businesses and institutions for all the people of Pakistan. The guide for all stakeholders who desire a prosperous and inclusive economy should be to make easier the journey of those who desire to improve their country. The commission believes Pakistan has considerable untapped potential amongst all sections of society which needs to be recognised and supported.

A full report will be published in the coming weeks which will include recommendations for political leaders, corporations, NGOs, finance and by specific sections of society including the wealthy elite. The Commission encourages relevant government ministries to integrate social entrepreneurship and innovation into government policy. It is willing to contribute to this process by sharing better practice from other parts of the world.

The report will outline a series of practical proposals to stimulate further change relevant to both urban and rural society, namely:

Government – A cross-departmental seminar hosted by the Ministry of Planning and Development to explore the role of public policy.

Finance – A new social investment fund and a network to support crowd funding initiatives.

Supporting Talent – An online Pakistani network of social entrepreneurs, a database of social businesses and support for incubators to enhance scalability.

Market Access – An online market place for social products and services.

Education/Training – Promote the sharing of content and academic/student exchange.

Diaspora – Encourage initiatives to engage with and mobilise the Pakistani Diaspora.

Ethics – A space for the exploration of ethical business initiatives and transparent governance.

International Perceptions – A road show based on the report and the promotion of technology, arts and creative industries.

Youth – A community social media campaign to promote a more accurate portrayal of the vibrancy of Pakistan. “My Pakistan!” (working title).

Recognition – A social entrepreneur and innovators awards programme to commence in 2014.

Replication – An online platform highlighting successful Pakistani models.

The Commission envisages these initiatives to be fully developed over a two year timeframe. New partnerships are invited to support the implementation of these recommendations.  Progress will be assessed at an international conference hosted by i-genius in Pakistan one year from now.

Mr. Tommy Hutchinson: Founder & CEO, i-genius/Commission Chair
Mr. Filippo Addarii: Member, European Commission Expert Group on Social Entrepreneurship
Dr. Mohammed Ali: Founder & CEO, QED-UK
Mr. Javaid Akhtar: Senior Program Manager, Hashoo Foundation
Mr. Umer Arfi: Senior Management Executive, Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund
Revd. Tony Bradley: Director, SEED, Liverpool Hope University Business School
Ms. Sabeen Haque: Director, Ashoka Pakistan
Ms. Kelly Hutchinson: Director, khonex
Mr. Faraz Khan: CEO, Seed Ventures
Ms. Aneeqa Malik: Founder & CEO, The Loop Global
Mr. Shivang Patel: Director of Events, i-genius
Mr. Faizan Quadri: Project Manager, Seed Ventures
Ms. Gulnaz Raja: Solicitor, UK Financial Ombudsman
Dr. Ahmed Shibli: Director/Scientist, European Technology Development
Mr. Abid Shirwani: Director, External Affairs, University of Management and Technology


Ms. Maira Azhar: Consultant, Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund
Mr. Asher Hasan: CEO & Founder, Naya Jeevan
Ms. Samia Liaquat Ali Khan: Group Head, Pakistan Poverty Alleviation

Lead Sponsors

Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund: A not-for-profit company and represents an innovative model of public private partnership.

Hashoo Foundation: a progressive and dynamic non-profit organization, leading the way in human development and poverty alleviation by implementing viable economic development, educational and capacity-building programs in Pakistan since 1988.

Opportunity Pakistan Media Exposure from various sources

+ i-genius Commission Photos
+ Daily Express PK
+ Khabar TV Video
+ Khabar TV Article
+ The Express Tribune
+ UMT Social Media Photos
+ NOP Photos
+ Tommy Hutchinson Opportunity Pakistan Article
+ PTV World Perspectives – Opportunity Pakistan TV Show


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *