Higher Education Partnerships between the Global North and Global South
Mutuality, Rather than Aid
Keywords:case study, higher education partnership, mutuality, policy development
Higher education partnerships between the Global North and the Global South are a recognized as means of developing research and education capacity, especially in the institutions of the Global South. Due to the realities of individual agreements, however, not all partnerships work effectively. This article examines a Norwegian and Ethiopian university partnership named “The South Ethiopia Network of Universities in Public Health (SENUPH)” as a case study to identify key elements in the development of effective, mutually beneficial partnerships from policy and institutional perspectives. The first part of this article outlines the different concepts of aid-focused partnerships and mutuality-focused partnerships. The second part reviews the evolution of the Norwegian Funding Programmes for Higher Education Partnerships. The third part describes the mission and key characteristics of SENUPH. The final part analyzes the policy implications for the development of functional, mutuality-focused higher education partnerships, as learned from the SENUPH case study. The Norwegian case provides three implications for how to make such mutual partnerships functional: 1) the importance of fostering the authorship of the partnership among key actors; 2) the significance of multiple phases and periodic evaluation to assess the progress of the partnerships; and 3) the promotion of knowledge and skill development among recipients so they can promote growth and cause a spillover effect that has a positive regional impact.
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