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Tag Archives: Africa
The idea of ‘world class universities’ grips the higher education sector, driven by several big international rankings. It’s an idea that is no less popular when it comes to many of the countries in which INASP works. But when it comes to research and higher education for development, is it world class universities that we should be pursuing? Different institutions to do different things Goolam Mohamedbhai argues that what African higher education needs is ‘mission differentiation’, namely a range of institutions doing different things. Rather than focusing on creating new universities, governments should instead be supporting existing institutions in different ways – some to become more research-focused, and some to concentrate more on undergraduate education. ‘It would be impossible, and unnecessary, for most staff in all tertiary institutions on the continent to have a PhD’ he argues. In a similar vein, Lynn Meek argues that our emphasis should be on … Continue reading
I participated in the first of a series of policy dialogues organised by Zeipnet in Zimbabwe. The aim of these is to bring different sectors of society together to discuss certain policy issues. In this first one, the uncoordinated policies of industry and trade were discussed. These policies were formulated in 2012 and the set targets should be achieved by 2016. They are part of the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim Asset). There were more than 50 people at the event and I was surprised to see so many members of the government, and more than 50% of the participants were civil servants. Among them, the director of research of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, the director of Insurance and Pensions from the Ministry of Finance, the director of the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority, the principal director for programmes at the Parliament, the director of the Ministry of … Continue reading
On Monday 7th July 2014, the Zimbabwe Evidence Informed Policy Network (ZeipNET) hosted the first in a series of Policy Dialogue events. The aim of these Policy Dialogues is to open discussions around key national policy issues, bringing government together with relevant members of the society such as the private sector, journalists, researchers, social leaders, etc. This series will help to bridge the research-policy divide and engage relevant stakeholders in the policy-making process. ZeipNET is part of VakaYiko; a consortium of five organisations involved in building the capacity of policy-makers to recognise, articulate and act on research to shape better policy. The first Policy Dialogue was held in Harare, Zimbabwe and focused on improving trade and industrial policy coordination and dialogue between the government and private sector. Director General of the Standards Association of Zimbabwe, Eve .C Gadzikwa, attended and chaired the Policy Dialogue. We asked her a few questions … Continue reading
This is a joint post written by Jonathan Harle (INASP Senior Programme Manager, Research Access and Availability) and Sioux Cumming (INASP Programme Manager, Journals Online). The other week we came across this infographic posted by the Oxford Internet Institute, showing the geography of academic knowledge. As is instantly clear, Europe and North America dominate the production of academic research, with Latin America, Africa and South Asia barely visible. In fact only Nigeria and South Africa make it onto the map for Africa, while the whole of central and Southern America is reduced to six countries, and while Pakistan is just about visible alongside its larger neighbour India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal (3 countries that INASP works with) are entirely absent. Of course, it’s no surprise that Europe and North America produce so much. Between them they account for some of the world’s leading universities and research institutes and many … Continue reading
Kenneth Mukigi is a 19 year old student at the Co-operative University College of Kenya, studying for his Bachelor of Co-operative Business (BCOB). He works as a Library Ambassador with one of INASP’s partner librarians. “I am glad to be a student ambassador because I want to be involved with the university activities – it gives me a level of responsibility. I am eager to meet new people, including other ambassadors, and I always welcome exposure to different opportunities. I also have an avid passion to give back to my society, which has raised me to the level I am” – Kenneth Mukigi Kenneth started writing when he was in primary school. He is inspired to write by the environment and society that surrounds him and is currently working on a novel, “The Chapter”. Kenneth wrote the two poems featured below after working with INASP.
By Martin Belcher and Sara Gwynn A recent Royal Society review of global scientific collaboration9 notes that “the challenge of measuring the value of science… faces all the scientific community” p25. For INASP part of measuring this value is in considering the inputs into science, and in particular research, in developing and emerging countries. Understanding if and how financial and policy commitments to research change over time might offer us some useful indicators of the health of the research sector in the countries that we work with and help us in our work to tailor research capacity support to each country’s context. We are particularly interested in understanding these issues in the context of developments over the last 10 years and then looking forward to the next 10. How has the environment changed since INASP has been working extensively in research sector strengthening? What are the wider trends and likely … Continue reading