SPARK & IFC present IGNITE 2016

Tackling Instability, Radicalisation and Forced Migration

16 November, Beurs van Berlage in Amsterdam

Thank you so much to all those that made this year’s IGNITE Conference a huge success! We were delighted to have such an amazing range of international experts and participants present. We hope to see you again next year.

Programme of Events

Report of IGNITE 2016






Sir Paul Collier (keynote)

Sir Paul Collier, CBE, former director of World Bank’s Development Research Group...
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Mahmud Johnson (keynote)

Mahmud is the founder & CEO of J-Palm Liberia, an palm oil...
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Mokhtar Alkhanshali

Mokhtar is the Founder & CEO of Port of Mokha Coffee, Yemen,...
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Petra Stienen (host)

Petra is the host of the IGNITE Conference. Petra is a former...
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Hans Docter (keynote)

Hans is Director Sustainable Economic Development and Ambassador Private Sector & Development...
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Antoinia Norman (keynote)

Anoinia is CEO of the Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship, South Africa.  She...
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Universities at the Centre of War

Obay Ahmed, Ahmed Hussein, Thomas Hill Afternoon Mosul University and Tikrit University,...
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The New Pioneers: Diaspora Entrepreneurs

Aki Harima, Stephanie Deubler, Khaalid Hassan Morning Diaspora entrepreneurship has only recently...
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Arrived, now what? Getting Refugees to the Right Work

Eefje Blankenvoort, Wissam Hema, Kurdo Mohamad, Amina el Berkaoui, Giselle Schellekens Afternoon...
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Hear from the Experts: Doing Business in Fragile States

Antoinia Norman, Mustafa Othman, Warda Diri, Mahmud Johnson, Tarek Elgheryani Afternoon Entrepreneurs...
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The Little Things: Holistic Approach to Higher Education for Syrian Refugees

Farooq Burney, Alaa Alwani, Hamza Khedr, Ahmed Taleb Morning The theme of...
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Peace-building Effects of Employment in the MENA region

Tilman Brück, Neil Ferguson, Valentina Mejía, Fernando Cantu, David Connolly Afternoon Having...
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It was an absolute pleasure to be included in the IGNITE Conference. Truly a wealth of information that has placed me in a position to join hands in the support of entrepreneurs in regions of such fragility and pain.

SPARK and IGNITE are always an inspiration to us working in conflict and hard environments. Seeing and listening to others that are struggling and striving to make the positive change is inspiring and “Igniting”!

IGNITE brought together a fascinating group of people all interested in how entrepreneurs and job creating can help build peace and stability. The presentations were inspiring, the discussions stimulating and the exchanges outside the meetings rooms very helpful.

As someone who has recently started working with young entrepreneurs in Somalia, the IGNITE conference has been a great platform to learn about what other organisations working in similar environments are doing to overcome the challenges of working in fragile regions.

It was a valuable opportunity to meet people from many different nations and to know their efforts to overcome the local problems. The discussions during IGNITE were organised in a good manner, it is definitely perfect work!

IGNITE 2016 offered diverse presentations and workshops by various actors such as researchers, NGOs and entrepreneurs. It is such a great platform for all the stakeholders with different backgrounds to co-create solutions for the challenges post-conflict states are facing.

I’ve rarely found myself surrounded by so many constructive actors all focused on finding and implementing sustainable and practical steps to address problems caused by radicalisation and forced migration in pursuit of more peaceful societies.

What a hopeful day IGNITE 2016 was. Educators and entrepreneurs from many countries told their stories about resilience and insights on how to move forward even in the most difficult circumstances during or after conflict. 

IGNITE always brings together diverse groups of people and their innovative ideas. IGNITE 2016 was no exception. It is our privilege to partner with SPARK!

I think that IGNITE 2016 is the best scientific event I attend up to now. Speakers from different types of states and sciences discussed the problems of the world together.

More than anything, the event was exciting and optimistic, despite the serious topics at hand. Too often, I see pessimism infiltrate such serious discussions. Not here. And that was refreshing.


MAIN PARTNER:                                               SUPPORTING PARTNER:                                              MEDIA PARTNER:

                              City of Amsterdam                                OneWorld




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