What Roles Have African Universities Played To Promote

What roles have African universities
played to promote production and
use of evidence for decision making
in health development on the
Dr. Desalegn Woldeyohannes
Associate Professor
26th Nov., 2014
Nairobi, Kenya
Presentation outline
• Introduction
• Roles of African Universities in Health
• Features of health researches in most African
• Obstacles to health research in Africa and African
• Conclusion
• References
• Universities have frequently been regarded as key
institutions in the process of:
 social change and
 development.
• Nations across the globe today depend
increasingly on:
 knowledge,
 ideas and
 skills which are produced in universities.
• A growing number of African countries have
realized that without investment in health
 the continent will remain on the sidelines of
the global economy and
will find it difficult to bring an end to extreme
• In Africa, there has been significant progress
in terms of health institutions and health
policy development in that,
Africa contributes to the global health
research and development effort and this
contribution is growing.
However, still there are challenges in utilizing
health research findings for evidence based
decision making.
Roles of African Universities in Health
• The most expedient role African research
institutions and universities have been allocated
 the production of highly skilled labour and
 health research output to meet perceived health
development needs.
• Greater capacity in African universities raises the
potential availability of:
 locally relevant data for evidence-based
decisions in the health sector.
…Roles of African Universities in
Health Development
• The values of universities in the areas of:
rigorous critical thinking,
 knowledge sharing,
and training-should make them strong
contributors to the global health equity
…Roles of African Universities in
Health Development
• Generally,
the strength,
productive capacity and
competitiveness of a country health labour
force depend on the quality of health
research produced by its universities.
…Roles of African Universities in
Health Development
• Countries with a weak university based health
research lag behind others in labour force
• As the health labour force drives
development, such countries lag behind in
Features of Health Research in most
African Universities
1. African countries produce low scientific
output in terms of publication.
….Features of health research
2. Most health researches in African universities
are conducted purely to:
 earn academic promotions and
 have no relevance to the needs of health
3. A disconnect exists between theory and
practice of science in most nations:
 education system in Africa and health
development needs.
….Features of health research
4. There is no system of match-making:
 to sharpen and bridge the gap between the
research output the university can offer and
 the needs of the nation/continent.
5. Operational researches haven’t been widely
carried out.
….Features of health research
6. Many African counties
are not integrated into
major research
collaboration network
in Africa
Obstacles to health research in Africa
and African Universities
• Numerous challenges face research efforts in
Africa. These are among others:
Reliability and validity of data
Influence of Values
 Fund
• Moreover, the communication of research
outputs to healthcare policy makers is at its
infantile stages.
• Policy makers access only to outdated or
incomplete health research output when
making decisions.
• And again the capacity of policy makers to use
health research findings is not much
• Even though, the need for health research as a
tool for health development has long been
realized by African nations and yet nothing
serious has been done.
• The slow pace of pursuit bothering on systematic
stagnation of research activities in health sectors
in African nations has been:
 largely responsible for the stunted growth and
development of Africa as a third world continent.
• University-based researchers should able to:
 monitor global health technology needs,
assess their relevance to national/continent
needs and
assist in developing the national technological
capacity for health development.
Looking ahead:
Need to Strengthen Research capacity
Need to Strengthen University Research
Well trained Researchers
University policies and strategies
Mechanisms to encourage & reward research
Dedicated university budget for research
Mechanisms of research communication
An Enabling
for research
Capacity for local PhD examination
University mechanisms for innovation
Culture of inquiry
Improved teaching- less didactic
Skills for research management
Research Leadership skills
Access to scientific literature
Access to Information Communication Technology
• Nebo, C. (2006). Nigerian Universities and
Competitiveness of the National Economy. Keynote
address presented at National symposium on Nigerian
universities and International competitiveness of the
Nigerian economy at Protea Hotel, Enugu 4-9.
• World Bank (2008). The little Green data book:
Washington DC.
• UNESCO (2014) Research and Development: Africa is
making progress despite major 12 Challenges,
http://www.unesco.org/new/en/mediaservices/single-view. retrieved on 10th March, 2014.
• Chukwuemeka, E.E.O. (2014) The Role of African
Researchers in The Socio-Economic Development of
The Continent In: Nkum R.K., Nani G., Atepor, L.,
Oppong, R.A., Awere E., and Bamfo-Agyei, E. (Eds)
Procs 3rd Applied Research Conference in Africa. (ARCA)
Conference, 7-9 August 2014, Accra, Ghana. 1-12.
• International Network for the Availability of Scientific
Publications (INASP) (2013). What is the evidence on
evidence-informed policy making? Lessons from the
International Conference on Evidence-Informed Policy
Making, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
• Eze, P. (2013). The Contribution of the Local
Government in Sustainable development in Enugu
State of Nigeria. Journal of Management Research,
4(1), 14-25.
• Osuala, E.C. (2000). Introduction to Research
Methodology. Onitsha, African FEP Publishers.
• Asakitikpi, A.E. (2006). Democratic governance and
government policies: Implications for quality health
care delivery in Nigeria. NASHER Journal, 5(1), 23-29.
Thank you!

similar documents