Vision & Mission


The BIT-AMENA (Berkeley iTechpreneurship in Asia, Middle East, and North Africa) Center for Building Innovation Economies connects Muslim majority countries in the AMENA region, the preponderance of which are, in varying degrees, dependent on fossil-based and extractive economies, to the resources of the center to create 10 million innovation jobs in 10 years.

The center makes a significant contribution to the entrenchment and institutionalization of innovation, entrepreneurship, productivity, competitiveness, creative problem solving, inclusive and sustainable growth, broad based prosperity, job creation, gender equality, effective institutions, high levels of social capital, and establishment of dynamic economies in AMENA region.


The BIT-AMENA Center for Building Innovation Economies seeks to achieve its vision through helping to create innovation ecosystems localized for each country, planting the seeds of hi-technology entrepreneurship on a massive scale, and helping to accelerate the creation of 100,000 startups in 10 years in the AMENA region. In pursuit of its vision, the center also promotes extensive human capital development and contributes to the removal of institutional, legal, cultural, educational, and financial barriers to the flowering of entrepreneurship, innovation, and development.Specifically, the BIT-AMENA Center:

Specifically, the BIT-AMENA Center:

  • Offers online and on-site courses (both at Berkeley and AMENA countries) focused on innovation and high technology entrepreneurship and investment to individuals from varying backgrounds and disciplines.
  • Seeks, through conferences, research, and rigorous analysis to uncover the impediments to the entrenchment of innovation economies in AMENA countries and come up with actionable recommendations for the resolution of those impediments.
  • Offers online and on-site courses to public administrators on the institutional, legal ,and regulatory requirements for building innovative economies.
  • Through its Teachers Without Borders Initiative, promotes scholar exchange programs whereby UC Berkeley instructors spend between 2-10 weeks in AMENA universities teaching entrepreneurship, innovation, management, and marketing-related courses.
  • Identifies, profiles, and promotes successful social and business entrepreneurs from the AMENA region as inspirational role models and change agents.
  • Provides virtual mentorship to the region’s aspiring entrepreneurs.

Steve Hirsch
Chief Data Officer, IntercontinentalExchange Group/NYSE