ARUA-Carnegie Data-Gathering & Benchmarking Workshop
Over 40 representatives from member universities of ARUA have participated in a 3-Day Capacity Building Workshop for Institutional Planning & Research Managers in Accra, as part of Phase 2 of a Carnegie Corporation of New York sponsored Benchmarking & Data-gathering project.
The project is designed to review the mode of data acquisition, preparation and understanding, as well as the use of data for decision making in member universities.
Lead consultant for the Benchmarking Project and Institutional Planner at the University of Pretoria, Prof. Gerald Ouma, gave an overview of what was accomplished in Phase I of the project and expectations for Phase II and beyond. A session on data acquisition, preparation and understanding as well as exploratory, diagnostic, predictive and prescriptive data analysis was presented by Dr. Hossein Karakani, a senior institutional researcher at the University of Pretoria.
Dr. Emmanuel Adu-Danso and Dr. Emmanuel Abbey, ARUA Project Consultants led a presentation and subsequent discussion of the Clarivate Bibliometric Data on ARUA universities.
Earlier in his opening remarks, ARUA Secretary-General, Prof. Ernest Aryeetey indicated that he was pleased that the workshop has finally taken place after delays especially in the first phase of the project and also due to restrictions imposed by COVID-19. Prof. Aryeetey indicated that Carnegie is considering ARUA’s proposal for a third phase of the project in which another meeting would be organized for Institutional Planning & Research Managers. Prof. Aryeetey concluded by indicating that it is the intention of ARUA to publish information about member universities annually to facilitate the network’s advocacy initiatives.
There were presentations from the universities present, namely, University of Nairobi, University of Lagos, University of Ibadan, Addis Ababa University, University of Ghana, Université Cheikh Anta Diop, University of KwaZulu-Natal, University of Pretoria, Rhodes University, University of Stellenbosch, University of the Witwatersrand, University of Dar es Salaam, Makerere University and University of Mauritius.
Participants discussed during the breakout sessions, lessons learned and next steps towards the completion of Phase 2 of the project as well ways of fostering continuous engagement between Institutional Planning and Research offices across the network were discussed.
Also, during the workshop, the president for the South African Association for Institutional Research (SAAIR), Dr Mxolisi Masango, shared on some of the initiatives of the group towards fostering capacity building in Africa. He extended an invitation to ARUA member universities for partnership.
Overall, the workshop was a huge success as participants were able to network, share ideas and resolved to ensure the success of the project. A platform for Institutional Research managers has been created within ARUA to foster the exchange of ideas between member universities.
The ARUA Strategic Plan for the next five (5) years was launched at the end of the three (3) day Workshop.