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Elmira Bayrasli


Project Leader

Elmira Bayrasli spearheads WPI's Entrepreneurship Ecosystems Project. In 2012, Public Affairs commissioned her to write a book about the rise of global enterprises. Tentatively titled "Steve Jobs Lives in Pakistan: Extraordinary Entrepreneurs in the Developing World," it takes a look at the growth of innovation beyond Silicon Valley; focusing on talented individuals around the world who have overcome insurmountable obstacles to lead high-growth businesses.  

Elmira writes about global innovations and entrepreneurship in her weekly column Entreventures on She also contributes to Reuters, VentureBeat, the Huffington Post, and MIT's Innovations journal. In 2010, Elmira co-authored a study for Pakistan's Planning Commission on entrepreneurship, entitled: "Creating a Place for the Future."   

A regular speaker on entrepreneurship and innovation, Elmira has recently traveled to Dubai to speak at the White House's Global Entrepreneurship Summit; Antalya, Turkey to speak at Startup Weekend; Seattle to speak at Microsoft; and Tokyo as a guest of the U.S. Embassy in Japan.   

Over the past several years, Elmira has worked to support start-ups in emerging markets at Endeavor; served as the Chief Spokesperson for the OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina in Sarajevo; and assisted former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations; an advisory board member for the Turkish Women’s International Network and Turkish Philanthropy Funds; and a mentor for the Women Innovate Mobile entrepreneur incubator.  


Twitter: @endeavoringE

Blog: Entreventures


Elmira's blog series from eTohum’s Startup Turkey, Forbes, Feb 2013.   “No Pussy Riot, No Steve Jobs,” VentureBeat, Feb 2013.  

"Entrepreneurs Save the World," World Policy Journal, June 2013.  

"Creating a Place for the Future," Tagore LLC, Dec 2010. 


Discussed the challenges entrepreneurs face in the developing world and why we won't see a Pakistani Steve Jobs anytime soon with World Policy On Air, Aug 2012.


Moderated a panel for Startup Turkey, "Experience in Silicon Valley" in Antalya, Turkey, Feb 15.

Represented the Aspen Institute at the the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Dubai and moderated a panel on tech and innovation in the Middle East, Dec 2012.

Coordinated a journalism training on covering entrepreneurship at the Georgia Institute of Public Affairs, Caucasus School of Journalism & Media Management, Nov 2012.



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