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The contribution of higher education to national systems: the case of Zambia

Sikwibele, Anne


This paper explores the contribution of higher education in the national education systems.  Higher education in Zambia has a critical role to play in developing and advancing the national education system through generating and disseminating research knowledge in areas such as curriculum, teacher training, reading, financing, management, quality of teaching, gender, equity, education management, policy and planning.  The higher education sector is small but influential at other levels and in all sectors of national development and it functions as the only source of qualified professionals, managers and leaders.    Higher education has a core function of research.  However, the issue has attracted discussions in relation to the quality, relevance and utility of the research in relation to other levels of education, national development and international research agendas.  Most research is done by individual or teams of researchers and there has been little institutional engagement in funded research except at research institutes.  Higher education has not been given priority in funding because it was seen to be expensive and elitist and thus research funding has been a constraint.  Recent global thinking advocates for improved funding for higher education to enable it to contribute effectively to other levels of education.  Campaigns for increased funding for higher education are due to its perceived contribution in national development and in achieving Millennium Development Goals of eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education, promoting gender equality and empowering women, reducing child mortality, improving maternal health, combating HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases, ensuring environmental sustainability, and developing a global partnership for development.  Current policy in Zambia acknowledges the role of research in the operation and development of the education system.  The policy framework is in place affirming that decision making in education will be informed by research done in collaboration with higher education.


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Title of Paper: The contribution of higher education to national systems: the case of Zambia
Conference Name: UNESCO Forum on Higher Education,Research and Knowledge, The Contribution of Higher Education to National Education Systems: Current Challenges for Africa
Conference Date: 2007-03-22
Conference Location: Accra, Ghana
Published as Proceedings: yes

Document Type:Conference Paper (Not Peer Reviewed)
Subject Area:National Systems and Comparative Studies
Keywords:Higher Education, Zambia, Education Systems, University of Zambia, Higher Education Research

File Size:70 KB
Rights:Permission to use this paper was granted by UNESCO.
Date Added:07 September 2007

Sikwibele, Anne (2007). The contribution of higher education to national systems: the case of Zambia Paper presented at the UNESCO Forum African Research Seminar, Accra, Ghana, March 2007, and published in the Proceedings ( Editors: AAU-UNESCO Forum), 22 March.