Modern Scots wisdom for v-cs

July 8, 2005

UK-Africa collaboration is breathing life into the continent. Olga Wojtas reports

Forty minutes drive from Gleneagles is Abertay Dundee University, which has just finished hosting a five-day conference on African higher education ahead of the G8 summit.

The key delegates were 30 African vice-chancellors or their equivalents.

They are developing a blueprint to implement the $8 billion (£4.5 billion) investment in higher education called for by the Commission for Africa report.

But the choice of Abertay Dundee had nothing to do with its proximity to Gleneagles. For the past five years, it has run a management development programme for African vice-chancellors. The vice-chancellors learn modern management techniques.

More than 100 senior staff from about 60 African universities have completed the programme. Applicants are selected by the Association of Commonwealth Universities, the Commonwealth of Learning and Abertay.

The Abertay Dundee delegates this week sent the Abertay Conversation Communique to the G8 leaders. It urges them to fully implement the Commission for Africa report, which recommends $500 million a year over ten years to revitalise Africa's higher education institutions and up to $3 billion to develop centres of excellence in science and technology.

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