Israel: The Ultimate Start-Up Nation
Although Israel faces formidable hardships, it remains a remarkable "Start-Up Nation," according to its Minister of Economic Affairs to the U.S., Eli Groner. Speaking to Foundation guests at the home of Ardythe and Sam Freshman in November along with David Siegel, Israel's Consul General to the Southwest, Minister Groner described Israel's 6.7 percent unemployment rate, its challenges in the quest for peace, and its vulnerability to the economic woes of other nations among its most vexing challenges.
Yet, in spite of these difficulties in its short, 64-year history, Israel has become a leader in economics, hi-tech and various industries and has made significant progress toward energy independence. It also has built a burgeoning nonprofit sector, including 27,000 organizations that employ more than 500,000 people and provide services to a considerable population. There is much one can learn from Israel's example in this arena, explained Minister Groner.
Minister Groner credited much of Israel's quick development to its people's spirit of innovation, and their willingness to try new things, act on good ideas and remain flexible. "You build a start-up nation," he said, "by rewarding people for thinking independently." This initiative, combined with strategic partners around the globe, makes for a very optimistic future.