IHSAN SHARIF: SO FAR, NONE OF THE THREE SECTORS OF AGRICULTURAL, INDUSTRIAL AND INFORMATION HAVE BEEN USED IN KURDISTAN TO PROVIDE JOB OPPORTUNITIES OR IN GENERAL, TO DEVELOP THE ECONOMY OF KURDISTAN REGION.

Ehsan Sharif

The problems of labor market and high rate of unemployment among individuals in the community, with regard to their relevance with making living daily, is one of the most controversial and debatable topic of the day. This topic has become in a way, in which the social, political, and economic level of stability of every country is related to the way of dealing with such issues.

Kurdistan Region, as it is considered as a developing area, is one of the areas where we can clearly see the effects of these issues on it. A lecturer at Soran University and expert in the field of management asserts on some problems related to issue of unemployment in Kurdistan and mentions that Kurdistan Region has not been able to manage its own job market properly and provide job opportunity for its people. Concerning the success of job market in Kurdistan in providing job opportunities, Mr. Ihsan Sharif, who is a lecturer at the Faculty of Law and Political Science and Management, points back to the stages of working in the history of humanity, consisting of the three successive stages of agricultural, industrial and information sector, in each of these stages, great changes have been made, chances and the attempts of human working have increased. In particular, during the information revolution, starting from the second half of the twentieth century up to now, these chances have been increasing. Therefore, according to Mr. Ihsan’s view, so far in Kurdistan, none of the three sectors of agricultural, industrial and information, have been taken to provide job opportunities or in general, for the development of Kurdistan Region. Definitely, , the disability for taking benefit from such sectors goes back to the existence of certain issues in the community in Kurdistan Region, he classifies them into some aspects, one of which is the instability of economic and political situation in Kurdistan, leading the investors not trust investment in Kurdistan. Besides, the laws and the rules of the job market are not well organized in Kurdistan Region, in which most of them are used to serve the rich and people in authority rather than ordinary people. However, the government does not do anything to support ordinary people to start their own independent business. Mr. Ihsan thinks that universities are another part of the problem unemployment in Kurdistan, as he believes that the universities in Kurdistan could not address the problems of unemployment, but even became the source of a number of issues and challenges. One of the most obvious issues is increasing the number of graduate unemployment; this is due to the terrible competition available among universities, causing universities to only care about their position and rank, rather than paying most attention to teaching and preparing the students for market. For instance, teachers are encouraged to conduct research, but it is not required from them to focus on finding solutions to a problem, or to have immediate benefits for the current situation in Kurdistan Region. In addition, the phenomenon of trading and misusing the certificates is increasing recently. Finally, he refers to the need to ask ourselves such questions as, how can a student find a job which he/she only got certificate without a proper skill or knowledge? How teachers who have paid to get Masters and PhD degrees inside or outside Kurdistan are able to prepare their students for finding or starting a job? That is why we can generally say that the way the universities in Kurdistan are managed is not a scientific management with the main objective to develop humanitarian abilities. The last and most important part of the challenge, as the lecturer of Soran University pointed out, is concerned with the individuals of our community who have not been able to prepare and develop themselves for job market. Indeed, a large number of young people spend along time daily on playing online games, surfing the net and doing similar things. Lack of adequate funding, capacity, proficiency, experience and knowledge in business and fear of starting business risks, are a number of reasons preventing the individuals to have their own business. At the end of the interview, Mr. Ihsan Sherif, concerning what should be done to have our own successful business marketing, said "The government should support the citizens and help them to have their own business, which can be done by providing people with small business loans, developing agriculture, facilitating and helping citizens to build different factories, and by conjugating working situation in Kurdistan with information sector. For example, providing the basic requirements of business marketing in the information technology era, such as a free and reliable online bank system in Kurdistan or setting up a postcode system in Kurdistan, putting restrictions on importing goods from abroad, preventing people with governmental positions from working in the private sector. These will not only help in increasing job opportunities and improving economy situation in Kurdistan, it will affect the stability of the political and internal situation in Kurdistan. This leads ordinary citizens to have interest within the government and consider themselves as the owners of the government, rather than those with power and positions to consider themselves as the owners of the government. Mr. Ihsan further said "Universities and educational centers should pay more attention to the practical side, rather than just theory, in particular in business department". It is requisite for the private sector develop local products, get benefit from the ability of experienced and qualified people. Individuals also have to develop their abilities, participate in tutorial courses, and develop their skills through different websites for learning other languages, such as English. Moreover, trying to learn the various programs of computer, application of modern ideas and means to become business owners, such as team working and sharing in building factories or companies, although political people may have unsuccessfully implemented many of these ideas, which eventually had a negative impact on the mind of individuals in Kurdistan community. Profile: Ihsan Sharif Salih, holds masters degree in the business management at Sheffield Hallam University in UK and is now a lecturer at business management department in the Faculty of Law, Political Science and Management in Soran University.