Missing – Middle in The Development Process: ‚A Think – Tank Concept‘ The Issue The missing middle (Small & Medium Size Enterprises, SMEs) largely referred to as the ‚engine‘ of economic growth in developing countries, faces a lot of challenges including but not limited to low levels of: Ø capital or access to credit, Ø technical knowhow, Ø investors, Ø overlaying networks of intermediaries, Ø economic and business development expertise. These challenges impede the realization of full economic potentials of these countries and thus leave them to still be aid dependent instead of being trade dependent. The Evidence The missing middle accounts for over 60% employment and over 55% of GDP in developed countries. But in developing countries, they contribute only about 18% of employment & 16% of GDP. However if barriers to the growth of the missing middles are removed, they could significantly contribute more to economic development by providing more jobs and income, expanding the middle class, broadening the tax base and ultimately decreasing poverty levels. The Solution / Think – Tank Concept The think tank is a youth initiative, managed by young talents at Managers without Borders (MwB) as a platform of a well-coordinated group of solution thinkers (experts & young talents) that discusses the challenges of the missing middle and find practical solutions to these challenges. Main objective / what think tank hopes to achieve The main objective of the think tank is to put a spotlight on the missing middle and their challenges whilst designing strategic frameworks and modules that provides pragmatic solutions to these challenges. It is not only a fact-finding or show casing platform, but rather a problem solving (action / execution of ideas) platform. Think tank thus want to achieve the following: Ø Easy identification of viable projects / Missing Middles in developing countries (efficient and effective collaboration) Ø Connecting MwBs as experts and young leaders to the right projects in developing countries (missing links results in projects not reaching target) Ø Easy access to skills and knowhow by interested stakeholders and a stronger voice for policy influencing Ø An opportunity for ‚diaspora youth‘ to reconnect to their land and give something back Execution of the Think Tank Concept The think tank will have 3 levels of actors. Ø Young talents / Specialists from developing and developed countries – initiate, discuss challenges, design frameworks, modules and strategies that attract investors to participate in the execution of these strategies to solve the problem Ø Managers without Borders – become the found ‘missing middle’ by administering the think-tank, link the German experts (MwBs) with the missing middle to sustainably execute and implement the proposed strategies Ø Organizations / stakeholders – follow the think tank platform and engage in execution of solutions The Open Space Forum – Kick Starter As a first step towards the realization of the think tank concept, MwB will organize an open space forum with a focus on the next generation of young leaders from both, the global North & South, to catalyze the process of forming the ‘think – tank’ towards a new era of eradicating poverty through businesses For more information on how you can support this event, Contact: Emmanuel.Zinsu@managerohnegrenzen.de Call: +497112362390 We look forward to engaging you as think tanks…!!