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A STEM-based partnership between a public university and the private sector in Ghana

A STEM-based partnership between a public university and the private sector in Ghana

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A STEM-based partnership between a public university and the private sector in Ghana

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  1. A STEM-based partnership between a public university and the private sector in Ghana Daniel A. Wubah University of Florida/Virginia Tech February 13 2009

  2. Outline • Background • Examples of public-private partnerships in Ghana • Densu delta restoration project • Lessons learned

  3. Ghana

  4. Overview of Ghana • Former British protectorate called Gold Coast; first democratic sub-Saharan country to become independent (March 6 1957); named after ancient African empire. • Approximately 92,000 sq miles (about the size of Oregon); Accra (capital city) is located at lat. 5°33′and long. N 0°15′W. • Approximately 23 million people (2007). • For 2008, GDP was $18 billion and nominal per capita income was $800.

  5. Private-public partnerships (PPP) • Advocacy: Private sector often initiate efforts to tackle local problems before national guidelines are developed. • Groups: Private sector includes traditional units, non-governmental investors and ‘private not for profit’ institutions. • Impact: Public sector provides access to capacity building to move the projects beyond local communities.

  6. Major sectors of PPP in Ghana • Agriculture • Health care • Education • Information technology • Environmental

  7. Agriculture • Partners: University of Science and Technology, Ghana government and private farmers • Focuses on helping local people to improve practices and yield • Better results when partnership is built on the traditional system • Outcome: Oil palm, pineapple, livestock and poultry and salt

  8. Health care • Partners: Private clinics, Ghana government, University of Ghana Medical School • Provide screening and increase awareness about HIV/AIDS • Filled a gap that existed due to lack of adequate government support while providing timely hands-on experiences for medical students

  9. Odorna Clinic

  10. Education • Partners: Selected secondary schools, NGOs and University of Cape Coast • Involves a full semester teaching practice • Provides learning experiences for pre-service science teachers in real-life situations • Outcome: Grades of students improve and they outperform peers on national exams e.g. Wesley Girls High School

  11. Information technology • Kofi Annan Center of Excellence in ICT • Partners: Governments of Ghana and India, and local universities • First advanced information technology institute • Has first supercomputer in West Africa and serves hub for ICT in the sub-region

  12. Environmental situation • More than fifty lagoons and estuaries along the coast of Ghana. • Lack of adequate management and protection plan; none in the National Park System. • Over 80% of the migratory waterfowls in Ghana stop at these sites; about 76 species of birds per sq. mile.

  13. Environmental challenge • Protected under Ramsar Convention because they harbor more than 10% of Atlantic Flyway populations. • Serves as only nesting sites for endangered species of sea turtles in West Africa. • Ghana Environmental Action Plan was established to protect five wetland protected areas.

  14. Lagoons • Densu River delta • Muni lagoon • Sakumo lagoon • Anlo-Keta lagoon • Songor lagoon

  15. Ghana

  16. Keta Lagoon

  17. Partners • World Bank: Environmental Resource Management program • Ghana: Department of Game and Wildlife • University of Cape Coast: School of Science (NSF REU host site) • Local community

  18. Goals • Restore wetland ecosystem • Safeguard wildlife habitat • Enhance sustainable productivity in the local community • Establish a management plan

  19. Coastal wetlands management project • Created a local site management committee made up of traditional community leaders, local government representatives, and university representatives. • Established a research station/laboratory to undertake research and baseline studies to determine the state of aquatic ecosystems.

  20. Coastal wetlands management project • Developed a facility that supported environmental education and provided resources to work with schoolchildren. • Monitored key hydrological, limnological, and biological indicators throughout the project. • REU student participation

  21. Outcomes • Protected crucial riparian and coastal areas and important habitat for migratory waterfowl. • Involving local stakeholders in planning and improving resource management and economic activities was critical. • Raised general public awareness of environmental issues in the local community.

  22. Challenges • Initial resistance by local communities • Sensitivity to local customs • Delineating role of each partner • Clear plan to sustain outcome

  23. Lessons learned • Choice of partners can shape the outcome • Key to explain the operational aspects and define the the critical factors for success • Role of university differ based on partnership type and funding source

  24. Summary • The PPP was an excellent vehicle to address a local problem with global implications • Increased the environmental awareness and improved economic standard of the local people • US students had life changing opportunities where service learning expanded classroom learning • Project serves as a model for other STEM-based PPP in Ghana

  25. Thank you