PASET as an Africa-Led Solution
The Partnership for skills in Applied Sciences, Engineering and Technology (PASET) was launched in 2013 by the Governments of Senegal, Ethiopia and Rwanda with facilitation by the World Bank. It aims to address systemic gaps in skills and knowledge in Sub-Saharan Africa’s priority ASET fields, and to build the capacity of African education and training institutions to train high quality technicians, engineers and scientists to meet the demands of the economy. Since 2013, more than 25 African countries, as well as representatives of Brazil, China, India, Japan and Korea have participated in PASET’s various activities.
Why is PASET Different
There are already many regional and national initiatives to build Africa’s scientific and technological capacity, supported by international donors and countries. However, an operational platform like PASET was needed to effectively and urgently harness and harmonize these efforts to address specific priority sector needs.
PASET is also needed to leverage the knowledge and experiences of Asian, Latin American and other countries investing heavily in Africa, and raise the level of their assistance. It is rooted in the idea that African governments as well as private sector must take the lead in building its ASET skills, using both regional and country-level initiatives as well as mobilizing international resources. They must also leverage best practices from around the world.
PASET’S 10-Year Goals
At the first PASET Forum in Dakar, Senegal in June 2014, its stakeholders unanimously adopted a Call to Action that outlined these medium-term goals:
- Support training of at least 10,000 new PhD holders in ASET fields in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).
- Establish an SSA- wide regional post-graduate scholarship program in ASET programs.
- Double the number of students in ASET programs in at least 10 countries in SSA.
- Support high quality ASET programs and centers of postgraduate studies and applied research in ASET disciplines in at least five additional universities in SSA.
- Develop at least five regional TVET centers of excellence in priority fields to train TVET faculty, enable resource sharing, quality assurance, and specialized training.
- Develop a regional quality assurance mechanism for ASET programs, benchmarked to comparable systems globally.
- Establish high quality data systems and benchmarking of ASET programs and institutions in at least 10 countries in SSA.
- Regional TVET Initiative: PASET’s flagship program focused on developing technical-vocational skills for new industries and services, as well as for modernizing agriculture. The initiative aims to support the development of highly specialized TVET programs at the diploma and degree levels for training of technicians and TVET faculty, as well as industry-recognized short-term training for regional priority sectors. It is currently being financed as a World Bank project initially for the East Africa region
- Regional Benchmarking Initiative for SSA Universities: This initiative aims to improve the quality and relevance of higher education by equipping institutions to identify their strengths and weaknesses and assess and monitor their progress relative to similar national, regional and global institutions. Read more here [ENGLISH. FRENCH].
- Forums, learning events, workshops, exchange visits: These events make a strong case to governments, private sector and other institutions on the importance of capacity building in ASET fields. They also promote regional and cross-regional knowledge-sharing. Check here for upcoming events.
- Technical Assistance: PASET provides technical assistance to countries through its Country ASET Action Plan (CAAP) program which supports countries to develop country-level plans for ASET skills development and mobilize funding accordingly, and through the Knowledge Sharing Program led by the Korea Development Institute to help countries prepare human resources development plans for priority sectors.
PASET has a nimble governing structure with a Governing Council comprising Ministers from Sub-Saharan African governments, the World Bank and other contributing partners to provide strategic direction and thought leadership. It includes an Executive Board, which serves as the key managing body responsible for overseeing implementation of PASET’s activities. A Consultative Advisory Group comprising high-level technical, scientific and other experts from Africa and other regions provides advice to the Governing Council and Executive Board. The World Bank hosts the interim Secretariat.
Download the Charter of the partnership for skills in applied sciences, engineering and technology (PASET) below: