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UNESCO Forum on Higher Education, Research and Knowledge

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The sub-Saharan Africa region is one of UNESCO’s priority areas. The activities undertaken by the Organization in the Education Sector aim at reinforcing Member States’ capacities to rethink the role of education and to undertake the necessary renewal, reconstruction and development of their education systems.

In this context, the UNESCO Forum Regional Scientific Committee for Africa stresses the need to provide a general overview of current projects and initiatives related to Higher Education, Research and Knowledge Production/Management which are taking place in the region.

Main themes
  • Analytical, political and historical investigations
  • Higher Education Policy and reconstruction issues
  • The sociology of knowledge production

Members of the African Scienfific Committee

  • Prof. Goolam MOHAMEDBHAI (Chair) - Mauritius
  • Prof. Mala SINGH (Vice Chair) - South Africa
  • Prof. Lidia BRITO - Mozambique
  • Prof. Souleymane Bachir DIAGNE - Senegal
  • Prof. Florida Amakobe KARANI - Kenya
  • Prof. Jean Tabi MANGA - Cameroon
  • Prof. Teboho MOJA - South Africa
  • Prof. Akilagpa SAWYERR - Ghana
  • Prof. Takyiwaa MANUH - Ghana
  • Prof. N'Dri Thérèse ASSIE-LUMUMBA - Ivory Coast
  • Prof. Bahru ZEWDE - Ethiopia

    Main Events:

    4th Regional Scientific Committee Meeting for Africa
    9-10 March 2006
    UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France
    The primary objective of the meeting was to develop the programme of the 2nd Regional Research Seminar (March 2007). Issues related to the publications on World Bank Policies and Higher Education and Historical Investigations were also discussed.
    3rd Regional Scientific Committee Meeting for Africa
    12-13 May 2005
    Maputo, Mozambique
    This Meeting focused on the Implications of the World Bank Policies on Higher Education: papers were presented by the committee members and discussed in view of their publication. The Conceptual Framework of the Committee was also developed, taking into consideration the extended composition of the Committee.

    2nd Regional Scientific Committee Meeting for Africa
    21-22 August 2003
    Harare, Zimbabwe
    The second meeting of the Committee included discussions on committee members’ papers on the World Bank book, “Constructing Knowledge Societies: New Challenges for Tertiary Education” and the NEPAD document, as well as on the draft of the commissioned paper on 'History and analysis of World Bank higher education policies and interventions in Africa 1960 to date' by Prof. Joel Samoff, Stanford University. The committee also discussed the organization of the first regional research seminar in 2004.

    Following the Committee meeting, on 23 August, the UNESCO Office in Harare invited the committee to a seminar on Scholarship, Society and Polity: The Way Forward for Zimbabwe and Africa. Senior Zimbabwean researchers presented the current situation in Zimbabwe.

    1st Regional Scientific Committee Meeting for Africa
    10-11 October 2002
    Dakar, Senegal
    The first Regional Scientific Committee Meeting was hosted by the UNESCO Office in Dakar and Regional Bureau for Education. The project was officially launched and the initiative presented.
    The Committee discussions focused on Higher Education and Research on the African Continent and the Committee decided upon its work plan.

    The Secretariat produced an Inventory on ongoing initiatives on higher education, research and knowledge in Africa. The objective of the inventory is to create a tool for analysis of which type of higher education initiatives and projects are undertaken in the region.

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