Monday, March 24, 2014

Promoting Science and Technology in Higher Education: it is about time...

As the World Bank in conjunction with the Rwandan government hosted on March 12-13, 2014 in the Rwandan capital city Kigali, the first ever high-level forum focusing on the promotion of science, technology and innovation in higher education system, the quality education described to be among other main factors affecting implementation of these commitments' success or failure likelihood seem very much on the rise.
While a evidence of how African government are engaging the private sector to invest strategically in science, technology, and engineering education in a move to accelerate Africa’s progress is still a big challenge,  so does the issue to reform tertiary education systems.

The lack of quality education and technology transfer that can contribute in reducing poverty by transferring technical skills to rural people, and which is described to be among other factors describing this situation in some higher learning in Africa may explain why some universities of science and technologies are lagging behind when compared to their counterparts.

Science, Technology and Innovation to me meant that governments were more aware of one another's needs to transform higher education system in Africa to energize and unlock the minds for promising economic prospects in order to increase the continent's competitiveness.

It meant that African governments still have a critical role to play in supporting and stimulating private sector investment to accelerate the continent’s progress into a developed, knowledge-based society within a generation.

Credit: Hope Rwanda Magazine
However the education system that is most common in  the large majority of universities and higher learning institutions across the whole African continent are still fully relying on government and other partners' funding instead of mobilizing their own resources.

Most experts, including both scientists, engineers, and technicians who were attending the high-level forum on science and technology in higher education, believe that believed that there was a need to invest strategically in this area as a move to accelerate Africa’s progress into a developed, knowledge-based society within a generation.

Indeed, with the current expansion of higher education enrollment in science, and technology, these imperatives should go hand in hand with inter-university collaboration to encourage competitiveness while promoting innovation while focusing on the need of local population.

Unfortunately, the paramount challenge facing African universities of science and technology has been the issue to develop their research capability as well as the lack of direct technology transfer in order to actively contribute to the development of the societies in which they live. END

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