International Centre for Higher Education Innovation
under the auspices of UNESCO

ICHEI Participated in the Capacity Building Meeting for Quality Assurance in Higher Education in SADC

April 12, 2019
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From April 2nd to 6th, 2019, Professor ZHAO Jianhua, Senior Specialist of International Centre for Higher Education Innovation under the auspices of UNESCO (hereafter as ICHEI) was invited by UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa (hereafter as UNESCO ROSA) to go to Lusaka—the capital of the Republic of Zambia, to participate in the “Capacity Building Meeting for Quality Assurance in Higher Education in Southern African Development Community (SADC)”.

Group Photo of All Participants

The meeting was hosted by UNESCO ROSA and organized by Higher Education Authority of Zambia. Representatives from China and several member states of SADC—Botswana, the Kingdom of eSwatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia participated in the meeting, and discussed the following topics under the framework of quality assurance in higher education within SADC region: policy layout, qualification mechanism, governance system, practical guideline, assurance and innovation, tools, assessments, challenges and opportunities, etc.

Prof. ZHAO Jianhua, representative from ICHEI, Shenzhen, China, delivered a keynote speech in the meeting. With the strong support of UNESCO-Shenzhen Funds-in-Trust Project (hereafter as SFIT), ICHEI is collaborating with 10 African countries to build and improve the quality assurance system of higher education in the countries. He illustrated the significance, progress, achievements and influence of the project. He also mentioned that China’s government is committed to boosting the international cooperation with the “Belt and Road” Initiative, and drawing the blueprint of the Community of Human Destiny. Prof. ZHAO’s remarks obtained positive concern and responses from other participates, and they have shown their collective willingness in promoting collaboration with ICHEI.

Prof. ZHAO Jianhua gave the keynote speech

During the meeting, representatives from Namibia, Malawi and Zambia— 3 member states of SADC, as well as the project countries of SFIT, shared their successful experiences and achievements of implementing the projects.

This meeting has further expanded the influence of Shenzhen, SUSTech and ICHEI in Southern African countries in the higher education era, which laid a solid foundation for the future cooperation with SADC.

“The UNESCO-Shenzhen Funds-in-Trust Project: Strengthening Quality Assurance in Higher Education in Africa” was established with support from the People’s Republic of China and contribution from the Shenzhen Municipal Government. The overall objective is to strengthen higher education systems at national and regional levels in African countries by developing quality assurance mechanisms. The project has been launched in 10 African countries: Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Gambia, Malawi, Mali, Namibia, Niger, Senegal, Togo, and Zambia, and it is UNESCO’s first funds-in-trust project focusing on higher education, which plays a significant role in the development of higher education in Africa, as well as the South-South Cooperation and the “Belt and Road” Initiative. In the project, ICHEI is not only a participant, but also a supervisor and facilitator. In ICHEI’s 7 “Digital Link” project countries, Egypt, the Gambia and South Africa are from the SFIT.