Boosting Technological Development in Shirak Marz

Start/end date: 
2016 - 2019
Implementing partner: 
Microsoft Innovation Center Armenia Foundation
EU budget: 

The project – implemented by the Microsoft Innovation Center Armenia and Gyumri Information Technologies Center – supports economic development in the Shirak marz by boosting the skills of young unemployed, and business development of the IT community through training and financial assistance. The project develops intensive IT training courses for young job-seekers and carries out mentoring programmes bringing young people together with potential employers from the IT industry. The project is also supporting IT companies in Shirak marz with a developed assistance package to increase their competitiveness.


  • To create employment opportunities by building up the skills of young job-seekers;
  • To boost existing IT companies in the region by supporting enhancement of skills, helping companies better to position themselves in local and international markets, and promoting the creation of new companies in the IT field.


Young unemployed population and IT businesses


  • Delivers free six-month training courses for unemployed young people aged 17-35 with good mathematical knowledge. 
  • Opens an IT incubation laboratory in Gyumri, which provides a 5-month coding bootcamp in information technologies for teams from among the trainees, and works on current projects developed by IT companies. 
  • Conducts a needs assessment among IT companies operating in the Shirak marz to understand what type of assistance they need to expand their operations and increase income.
  • Provides sub-grants to local IT companies to expand their activities and create new workplaces for project trainees.
  • Assists the trainees to form teams and establish their own startups. 


By the end of the project, the following results should have been achieved:

  • 180 people will be trained in programming during the project. 
  • Upon completion of the coding bootcamp programme, 90 trainees will start their careers as developers.
  • Based on the results of the needs assessment, the project will develop and deliver a capacity building programme for 15 IT companies.
  • Two teams of trainees will receive startup assistance.


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