Higher education in South Sudan: Past, Present, and Future (Differentiation, TVET, STI ecosystems, and gender-balance)

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John Apuruot Akec

Abstract

The paper describes a gender-based analysis of data on the students and academic staff at 14 institutions of tertiary education in South Sudan (five public universities, two private universities, and seven TVET institutions). Aspects considered by the analysis include: gender-segregated distribution of academic staff, academic ranks, subject of specialization, institutional affiliation, educational attainment, student populations, their programmes of studies, field of specialization, and gender compositions of students, with focus on gender representation in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).   Further, the paper has reviewed the status of Science, Technology, and Innovation (ST&I) ecosystems in the country in terms of how it is organised or governed.  And in order to make recommendations on the needed reforms and adjustments, and align South Sudan’s higher education with the rest of the world, the paper reviewed national development plans and South Sudan Vision 2040, in addition to regional and global trends that are forcing change in higher systems. Furthermore, the paper reviewed the experience of BRICs with the expansion of their higher education systems in the past two decades with the aim of applying the lessons learned to transforming South Sudan of tertiary education system.  Other factors and trends that are driving change in higher education systems in Africa in medium to long term, and that will impact the development of higher education sector in South Sudan, have been highlighted in the paper. 

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