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Higher education development and knowledge economy optimism in Ethiopia

Molla, Tebeje and Gale, Trevor 2014, Higher education development and knowledge economy optimism in Ethiopia, Knowledge cultures, vol. 2, no. 4, pp. 1-17.

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Title Higher education development and knowledge economy optimism in Ethiopia
Author(s) Molla, Tebeje
Gale, TrevorORCID iD for Gale, Trevor orcid.org/0000-0003-3927-9267
Journal name Knowledge cultures
Volume number 2
Issue number 4
Start page 1
End page 17
Total pages 17
Publisher Addleton Academic Publishers
Place of publication Woodside, N.Y.
Publication date 2014-07
ISSN 2327-5731
Keyword(s) Ethiopia
higher education
freedom
capability
Amartya Sen
poverty reduction
world bank
Summary Higher education has been assigned new global importance. It is now the vehicle of choice for nations seeking to increase their competitiveness in an expanding knowledge economy. In developing nations, higher education has also been linked to goals to reduce poverty, under the influence of transnational aid agencies such as the World Bank and its knowledge-driven poverty reduction strategies. Drawing on Amartya Sen’s capability approach to development, this paper argues that this instrumentalization of higher education produces narrow conceptions of development, poverty and knowledge, and an unfounded optimism in ‘knowledge for skills’. The site for this analysis is the development and rapid expansion of Ethiopia’s higher education system, with its antecedents in a centuries-old religious education system but with more recent beginnings in the 1950s and, since the 1990s, under the influence of the World Bank. At stake are opportunity and process freedoms and the deprivation of capability (i.e. poverty) resulting from the constraint of these, evident in the nation’s higher education system. The paper concludes that without concerted efforts to redress injustices and to protect and expand people’s freedom, Ethiopian higher education has little to contribute to national socio-economic transformation agendas.
Language eng
Field of Research 130103 Higher Education
Socio Economic Objective 970113 Expanding Knowledge in Education
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2014, Addleton Academic Publishers
Free to Read? Yes
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30072315

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Education
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.