Past and Current Experiences of Higher Education Partnership Approaches within the wider context of Development Cooperation with Africa

This article traces how changes in international development policy and practice over time and across different donor organisations has influenced Ireland’s stance on the inclusion of higher education and research in Ireland’s overseas development assistance. Evidence of the changes in Ireland’s official thinking on higher education and development is illustrated through two case studies profiling two different modalities, separated by 30 years, which have the common aim of harnessing higher education capacity and expertise for improving international development. The article compares and contrasts these modalities, highlighting the characteristics of higher education partnerships, and emerging challenges within these modalities. It concludes by drawing key lessons for Ireland from the reflection, and supporting  the view that higher education and research, along with government and the wider civil society, has a vital role to play in promoting balanced socio-economic development and poverty reduction. 


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