North Africa is a region, which groups the countries of Mauritania, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya and Egypt, is a region ripe for business opportunities. The region represents a market of about 200 million people with an average real GDP growth of 4.9% in 2017. Because of its free trade agreements with Europe and several countries in Africa and the Middle East, the region can potentially become a gateway to a market of more than a billion people. The North African region is going through profound changes following the initial upheaval of the Arab Spring. But there are many questions that await. Will these countries transition to democracy? Will they be able to create a business environment that is attractive to investors? If so, what investment opportunities exist in the region? What are the risks involved and the future challenges? And, how best to enter such a market? The course will explore these questions and other issues related to the entrepreneurship ecosystem and doing business in North Africa in general.
The course project involves working closely with student start-up teams from Tunisia to prepare them for the national Open Startup Tunisia (OST) competition which will be held during our visit to Tunisia. The project is truly an immersive, multicultural experience where students will partner, mentor, coach, and interact with Tunisian youth, both online and offline.
This course will travel to Tunis from January 11-18, 2020. Global Immersion Program classes bridge classroom lessons and business practices in another country. These three credit classes meet for half a term in New York prior to a one week visit to the country of focus where students will meet with business executives and government officials while working on team projects. Upon return from the travel portion of the class, students may have one wrap up meeting at Columbia Business School. The 2019-2020 Global Immersion Program fee for most classes is $1850 and provides students with double occupancy lodging, ground transportation and some meals; unless an increased fee is otherwise specified in the course description. It does not cover roundtrip international airfare. Attendance both in New York and in-country and regular participation are a crucial part of the learning experience and as such attendance is mandatory. Students who miss the first class meeting may be removed from the course. No program fee refunds will be given after the add/drop period has closed. Please visit the Chazen Institute website to learn more about the Global Immersion Program, and visit the Global Immersion Policies page to review policies affecting these courses.