The Role of Private Higher Education Institutions in Sustainable Development
ALICT, leadership and the SDGs It is the view of Patti Swarts, GESCI’s Director of programs, that “…with the global call for Sustainable Development (SD) and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) launched in September 2015, there is a need for all, including higher education providers, to step up and take a broader view of their role in society and the interconnection of societal success and academic and business success.” In a paper presented at the 14th International Conference on Private Higher Education, which took place in Addis Ababa last July, Patti Swarts presented how the African Leadership in ICT and Knowledge Society Development (ALICT) program is contributing to Africa’s sustainable development. The program is building a critical mass of African leaders equipped with the skills, knowledge and vision to create an ‘Inclusive Knowledge Society for All’ and a commanding understanding of the key elements required to develop knowledge societies in Africa. The paper is entitled ‘The role of Private Higher Education institutions in sustainable development: the case of the ALICT program’.The ALICT program puts emphasis on the acquisition of new leadership skills required (i) to tackle global and continental challenges as well as emerging issues in a rapidly changing world; (ii) to develop and implement coherent policies that will advance national and regional sustainable socio-economic development. To date, the program has been successfully delivered to over 500 senior government officials in 16 African countries. It is gearing up to deliver on a larger scale and to additional countries, including through partnerships with African universities. Developed and implemented by GESCI, ALICT is a flagship program of the AUC, supported by Finland’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Swedish international Development Agency (SIDA).