tutorialsITOCA in collaboration with Albert R. Mann Library, Cornell University is pleased to announce the TEEAL Post-Graduate Research Paper Competition 2015 for post graduate students from six eligible African countries (Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda) to obtain TEEAL, The Essential Electronic Agricultural Library for their institution as well as prize money. TEEAL invites MSc and PhD students to submit research papers in food production, food security, agricultural and food policy or rural development.

About TEEAL: The Essential Electronic Agricultural Library (TEEAL), is a full-text and searchable database of articles from more than 325 high-quality research journals in agriculture and the related sciences. Beginning with the 2012 Update of the collection, which accounts for the redesign of both the TEEAL hardware and software, the collection arrives on a “mini computer” that you can run on one computer workstation or make available to multiple computers via your Local Area Network (LAN) or intranet. For many years, TEEAL has been improving access at institutions with limited Internet time and/or financial resources. It is a searchable, offline, digital library which contains mainly agriculturally focused reference journals updated annually and delivered by the TEEAL Project Office at Cornell University’s Mann Library.

MSc and PhD students from Nigeria, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Uganda, Tanzania and Ethiopia are invited to submit research papers in food production, food security, agricultural and food policy, and rural development. The Highlighted countries above are RUFORUM countries of operation and we encourage our member universities to participate.

  • NO Entry Fee. Free registration.
  • Winners will be featured on the TEEAL and ITOCA websites and Facebook pages.
  • Each winner will receive a certificate.
  • The winning papers will be published on the TEEAL website.
  • Deadline for Registration: 30 May 2015.
  • Deadline for submissions of research paper: 30 July 2015.

To participate in the competition visit http://www.itoca.org or email itoca@itoca.org or Download the flyer for more details.

Copyright: Jason Larkin / Panos

Copyright: Jason Larkin / Panos

By Irene Friesenhahn

Irene Friesenhahn rounds up sources of online information, highlighting key initiatives on Africa’s higher education

Several organisations address higher education in Africa through their work. The Carnegie Corporation of New York and UN agencies including UNESCO and the World Bank provide great online resources.

In 1980 UNESCO set up the African Network of Scientific and Technological Institutions (ANSTI), a regional NGO that facilitates collaboration and strengthens capacity for training and research. Since 2005, ANSTI has organised a biannual conference series — the Conference of Vice-Chancellors, Deans of Science Engineering and Technology (COVIDSET) — to discuss strategic issues in science and engineering education. The COVIDSET reports propose action plans for making science, engineering and technology training more relevant to development in Africa. UNESCO’s Education for All Global Monitoring Report identifies effective policy reforms, best practice and emerging challenges and assesses progress towards achieving the ‘Dakar’ Education for All goals, which include increasing the number of students in higher education and linking education to the workplace. Another UNESCO initiative, Education Transforms Lives, promotes education as a development catalyst that increases health and raises the chances of employment. The UNESCO Institute for Statistics provides statistics and data on various aspects of higher education in Sub-Saharan Africa, such as enrolment and mobility, and how graduates are distributed by field. UNESCO provides an up-to-date overview of educational spending in Africa in a spread sheet.

The World Bank has recently launched 19 centres of excellence in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, located at universities in seven countries in West and Central Africa. A separate World Bank programme, Tertiary Education In Africa, focuses on six areas within the higher education sector in Sub-Saharan Africa: sustainable financing; diversification and public-private partnerships; governance and management; quality; labour market relevance and linkages; and regionalisation. The programme website offers publications analysing developments in these areas, including comparisons between different African countries. The World Bank also makes statistics and indicators on tertiary education worldwide available through EdStats. And its Open Knowledge Repository contains the Africa Development Indicators reports, one of the most elaborate series of statistical indicators on Africa’s development status. The repository also offers reports on the status of education, including tertiary education, in various African countries.

The Carnegie Corporation of New York’s Higher Education and Libraries in Africa programme offers financial support and resource access to institutions and projects working to enhance capacity development in Sub-Saharan Africa. It also promotes networks and provides fellowships for scientists and scholars across the continent. The programme focuses on public libraries in South Africa and on excellence in postgraduate training, research and retention of scientists in their home nations (Ghana, South Africa and Uganda). In 2007, the Corporation also launched the Africa Regional Initiative in Science and Education. This aims to strengthen science and engineering research and teaching by supporting university-based networks — helping students access grants and career opportunities and training new faculty or upgrading staff qualifications.

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UoNThe University of Nairobi (UoN) will join other regional universities in bidding to host one of the centres of excellence being funded by the World Bank.

This was revealed during a consultative meeting between The University of Nairobi (UoN) and the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM).

The World Bank African Higher Education Centres of Excellence initiative will meet the demand for specialized skills and knowledge critical for Africa’s development.

Speaking on behalf of the Vice-Chancellor, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research, Production and Extension, Prof. Lucy Irungu, noted that the University will develop proposals responding to the World Bank’s call for proposals. The University will concentrate on three areas of focus which are Health Sciences, Agriculture Sciences and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

On his part, Prof. Adipala Ekwamu, the Executive Secretary, RUFORUM, noted that the establishment of centres of excellence in the continent is as a result of a specific recommendation made to improve higher education in Africa. He said that the process will be competitive, open and transparent and called on the University to develop proposals of quality and content.

Present during the meeting was Prof. Charles Mulei, Ag. Principal, College of Agriculture and Veterinary Sciences and Dean, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Prof. John Kimenju, Dean, Faculty of Agriculture, Prof. William Ogara, Director, Centre for International Programmes and Links, Prof. Raphael Wahome and Ms. Rosemary Omwandho, Assistant Registrar, Research, Production and Extension.

To understand more about the World Bank Centers of Excellence, please read the press release on the World Bank to Finance 19 Centers of Excellence to Help Transform Science, Technology, and Higher Education in Africa

This article has been reposted from the university of Nairobi website. Read more.

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