The first meeting of the Policy Development Unit (PDU) Development Team took place virtually on 6th September 2021, bringing together highly qualified selected team tasked with planning for the set-up of the PDU. The meeting was attended by representatives from the European Commission, Ms. Deirdre Lennan and from the African Union Commission – Mr. Emmanuel Chigozie, and representatives from OBREAL Global and the AAU, in addition to the seven nominated team members/experts. Through its’ Policy Component, HAQAA2 is supporting the PDU Development Team, whose prime objective is to prepare a work plan for the set-up of a Policy Data Unit (PDU) for African higher education.
This Unit would require comprehensive stakeholder buy-in, the ability to articulate with existing data collection processes and also the possibility to support capacity building for data collection in countries that do not have it yet. This will ensure the Unit will provide reliable and up-to-date inputs on higher education in Africa, making them easily accessible and aligning them to the assessment of the objectives of the CESA HE Cluster in particular, and the CESA objectives in general.
The PDU Development Team is expected to define the scope, relevant methodology and policy, legal and institutional framework for the PDU. It should also contemplate the governance structure of the PDU, once consolidated, so that it articulates with a clear structure of actors, partners, and organizations at regional and national level.
The Team will work closely with the CESA HE Cluster and regional partners in designing CESA policy dialogue events and focus groups that could feed into and promote the PDU’s work. The Team will also map out existing African data sources and initiatives related to HE, including one-off studies and more longitudinal data collection, at different levels, while at the same time building contacts with the relevant stakeholders.