Korea’s Asia Foundation has launched a programme to support refugees fleeing North Korea and resettling in South Korea.
Personal Initiative Training, the name of the programme, was developed in Germany during reunification to close the cultural and economic gap between workers in East and West Germany. The programme will specifically support North Korean refugees that are working towards becoming entrepreneurs. According to the Hana Foundation, roughly 40 per cent of the 34,000 North Korean refugees in South Korea aspire to become entrepreneurs.
Unlike traditional entrepreneurship programmes, which can rely on one-way lectures focused on skills and knowledge, PI Training emphasizes hands-on training, group discussions, and feedback exchanges.
PI Training has led to tangible results in business performance that go beyond mindset and behavioural changes, the Asia Foundation assets. A study in Science found that PI Training was more effective in improving business performance than best-in-class entrepreneurship training programmes.
According to the Asia Foundation, 67 per cent of participants in the programme said they had improved their profitability within three months of completing Personal Initiative Training.