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Pan African University secures a grant from the African Development Bank

More than one year and a half after the official inauguration of the Pan African University (PAU), this newly established African academic network secured a nearly EUR 35 million grant for operation in 2013-2019 earlier this month. Support to the PAU project comes from the African Union Commission (AUC), the countries hosting PAU universities (Cameroon, Kenya and Nigeria), and several partner countries such as Japan, Germany, India and Sweden. The grant is provided through the African Development Bank (AfDB). Three institutions have been selected to date to host the regional PAU universities and centres of excellence in three priority areas of teaching and research (see ACA Newsletter – Education Europe, January 2012):
  • the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology in Kenya (science, engineering and technology);
  • the University of Yaoundé II in Cameroon (governance, humanities and social sciences); and
  • the University of Ibadan in Nigeria (life and earth sciences).  
The PAU project involves three major components:
  • support to science and technology programmes in the West and East African Hubs, including initiatives related to curricular development, upgrade of infrastructure, academic exchange and scholarship programmes, as well as cooperation projects with industry and research institutions (~75 % of the grant);
  • support to governance and regional integration programmes in the Central African Hub (researchers and student exchange programme, distance learning, and curriculum development amongst others) (~15 % of the grant);
  • support to project administration and management (staff recruitment and administration) (~10 % of the grant).
The PAU commits itself to an ambitious agenda – performance indicators have been, for instance, set for better visibility on international league tables, as well as higher research productivity and employability of graduates. Meanwhile, the network has still to include two more institutions to operate as North and South African Hubs. Algeria and South Africa are cited amongst the most likely candidates at this stage, but no specific funding has been secured for the additional network nodes at this stage.   African Development Bank Group