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University Leaders Forum: Developing and Retaining the Next Generation of Academics

November 22-25, 2008
Venue: La Palm Royal Beach Hotel
Accra, Ghana

[Background Paper]
[Final Report]

Final Program

Objectives of the University Leaders' Forum:

  1. Create greater awareness of the issue (scale, features, and constraints)
  2. Identify points of leverage: what needs to be done and which stakeholders need to be engaged
  3. Catalyze action; empower individual institutions to implement strategic interventions
  4. Inform the work of funders and leverage additional resources
  5. Identify as many actionable items as possible

6:00 pmSaturday, November 22

Arrival of Participants during the day

Pre-Forum Meetings

  • 10 am-12 noon. Briefing session with rapporteurs at the La Palm Royal Beach Hotel
  • 1:00 pm. Lunch meeting of Steering Committee
  • 3:00 pm onwards. Ad hoc briefing for session chairs

6:00 pm Welcome Reception, La Palm Royal Beach Hotel

6:45 pm Dinner, La Palm Royal Beach Hotel

9:00 am - 5:00 pmSunday, November 23


9:00-9:30 am

Welcoming Remarks

C.N.B. Tagoe, Vice-Chancellor, University of Ghana and Co-Chair, University Leaders' Forum

Welcome and Goals of the Forum

Njabulo Ndebele, President, the Association of African Universities and Co-Chair, University Leaders' Forum


9:30-10:30 am

Session 1. Keynote Address. Developing the 21st Century Scholar: What does it mean for Africa?

Ivan Addae-Mensah, former Vice-Chancellor of University of Ghana [download slides] [download Word doc]

10:30-11:00 am. Tea Break

11:00 am-12:30 pm

Session 2. Understanding the Problem: The Global Context

Exploration of the global context in which African higher education resides, particularly any effort to develop and retain the next generation of African academics.

Chair: Aki Sawyerr, former Secretary General, Association of African Universities

  • Takyiwaa Manuh, Director of the Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana [download slides]
  • Goolam Mohamedbhai, Secretary-General, Association of African Universities [download slides]

Discussion (30 minutes)

12:30-1:30 pm

Lunch with Kgotla

Chair: Olufemi Bamiro, Vice Chancellor, University of Ibadan

1:30-2:45 pm

Session 3. Understanding the Problem: The National Context

Presentation and discussion of national profiles of the Next Generation of Academics.

Chair: Olive Mugenda, Vice Chancellor, Kenyatta University

Vice Chancellors respond:

  • Sylvia Temu, Acting Director of Planning and Finance, for Rwekaza Mukandala, Vice Chancellor, University of Dar es Salaam [download slides]
  • Russel Botman, Vice Chancellor, University of Stellenbosch

Young Scholars respond:

  • Nana Akua Anyidoho, Research Fellow, University of Ghana
  • Susan Balaba Tumwebaze, Lecturer, Makerere University [download slides]

Discussion (30 minutes)

2:45-3:15 pm. Tea Break.

Session 4. Understanding the National Financing Issues

Presentation and discussion of national higher education financing models, with particular attention to how they affect the development and retention of the Next Generation of Academics.

Chair: Njabulo Ndebele, President, the Association of African Universities and Co-Chair, University Leaders' Forum

Discussion (30 minutes)

6:30 pm Depart for Dinner at the University of Ghana

9:00 am - 5:30 pmMonday, November 24


In an effort to share experiences and promote action, today's sessions explore national and institutional approaches to supporting the Next Generation of Academics. Session 5 focuses on the policy and regulatory developments in four countries. Session 6 investigates promising approaches to staff recruitment and retention in four universities that have identified the constraints and started to address them. Session 7 explores lessons from the private sector. Session 8 focuses on a number of mechanisms to support academic staff training.

9:00-10:30 am

Session 5. Experiences and Challenges in National Policy Environments

Representatives from four tertiary councils provide country analyses on the policy and regulatory issues affecting Next Generation of Academics, the efforts underway, and questions that remain open.

Chair: Loyiso Nongxa, Vice Chancellor, University of Witwatersrand

  • Cheryl de la Rey, Chief Executive Officer, Council on Higher Education, South Africa [download slides]
  • Paul Effah, Executive Secretary, National Council for Tertiary Education, Ghana [download slides]
  • A.B.K. Kasozi, Executive Director, National Council for Higher Education, Uganda [download slides]
  • Simon Schwartzman, Researcher, Instituto de Estudos do Trabalho e Sociedade, Brazil [download slides]

Discussion (30 minutes)

10:30-11:00 am. Tea Break

11:00 am-1:00 pm

Session 6: Institutional Opportunities for Staff Recruitment, Retention and Development

Four African university case studies on staff development covering (a) problems experienced, (b) processes followed to identify solutions, (c) description of approach; and (d) lessons to date, all with explicit attention to equity.

Chair: Matthew Luhanga, former Vice Chancellor, University of Dar es Salaam

1:00-2:00 pm. Lunch

Each of the case study presenters from Session 6 will continue the discussion at separate tables in the dining room.

2:00-3:15 pm

Session 7: Lessons from Private Sector on Staff Recruitment and Development

Roundtable conversation of private sector representatives reacting to what they have heard, discussing what the private sector can offer to help retain and develop university faculty so that long-term private sector research and training needs are met, and exploring the kinds of productive relationships that can be built between universities and the private sector.

Moderator: Bobby Godsell, CEO, AngloGold Ashanti; non-Executive Chair, ESKOM

  • Nadu Denloye, Director and co-founder, Telnet Nigeria; board member, EcoBank Nigeria
  • James Mwangi, CEO and Managing Director, Equity Bank Limited, Kenya
  • Anthony Oteng-Gyasi, Managing Director, Tropical Cable and Conductors; Chairman of the University of Ghana Council; President of the Association of Ghana Industries

Discussion (20 minutes)

3:15-3:45 pm. Tea Break

3:45-5:30 pm

Session 8: Addressing the Training Needs

This session explores a range of mechanisms to support training the Next Generation of Academics and how we can get the most out of resources that already exist. Speakers cover doctoral training through an African regional network, supporting mentorship and leadership development, structuring US-African university partnerships for best advantage, and using externally funded scholarships strategically.

Chair: Mike Faborode, Vice Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University

  • Alex Ezeh, Executive Director, Africa Population and Health Research Center. "Consortium for Advanced Research Training in Africa (CARTA): A model for training and retaining the next generation of African academics" [download slides]
  • Marlene Hamilton, former Pro-Vice-Chancellor of University of the West Indies. "Academic Staff Development: The Experience of UWI" [download slides]
  • David Wiley, Vice Chairperson, US National Commission for UNESCO, and co-chair of the Council of Title VI National Resource Centers. "Lessons from US-Africa University Partnerships" [download slides]
  • John Kirkland, Executive Secretary, Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK. "A Strategic Approach to Scholarships: Making the Best Use of the Opportunities Available" [download slides]

Discussion (20 minutes)

7:00 pm. Dinner at La Palm Royal Beach Hotel

Chair: Shehu Abdullahi, Vice Chancellor, Ahmadu Bello University

Guest speaker: Sibry Tapsoba, Manager, Education, Science and Technology Division, African Development Bank, "The Role of Science and Technology Capacity in the Emerging African University" [download slides]

8:30 am - 2:00 pmTuesday, November 25


8:30-11:00 am

Session 9: Finding Common Ground: Country & Regional Breakout Groups

Chair: Njabulo Ndebele, President, the Association of African Universities and Co-Chair, University Leaders' Forum

After receiving instructions in the plenary session, participants will break into four country/regional groups for roundtable discussions of what is needed, who can do what, and next steps. Recorders will be assigned.

  1. East Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda)
  2. Southern Africa (Mozambique, Madagascar and South Africa)
  3. Ghana
  4. Nigeria


10:00-10:15 am. Tea Break

Discussion continues.

[11:00-11:45 am. Session 9 Recorders meet with Chief Rapporteur.]

11:00-11:45 am

Session 10: Reflections and New Perspectives: Lessons learned at Forum

Participants representing a range of stakeholder groups and geographic backgrounds will briefly share what they are taking from the Forum.

Chair: Brian O'Connell, Vice Chancellor, University of the Western Cape [download slides]

  • Ministry of Finance: George Gyan Baffour, Ghana
  • Ministry of Education: Robert Odok Oceng, Uganda
  • Tertiary Council: Julius Okojie, Nigeria
  • Vice Chancellor: Akwasi Asabere-Ameyaw, University of Education, Winneba, Ghana
  • Young Scholar: Susan Balaba Tumwebaze, Uganda
  • Funder: Peter Materu, World Bank
  • GULF leader: Ruth Simmons, Brown University
  • PHEA: Suzanne Grant Lewis

12:00-1:00 pm. Official Closing

Chair: C.N.B. Tagoe, Vice Chancellor, University of Ghana and Co-Chair, University Leaders' Forum

  • Presentation of Country/Regional Group Plans by the Chief Rapporteur
  • Discussion (15 minutes)

The Way Forward: A Challenge from the Co-Chairs

  • Njabulo Ndebele
  • C.N.B. Tagoe

1:00-2:00 pm. LUNCH

Participants depart.

3:00 pm. Optional tour of the University of Ghana campus