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Higher education cooperation between Eritrea and Finland

Eritrean Institute of Technology 

Higher education cooperation between Eritrea and Finland

By Finnish National Agency for Education

The Eritrea HEI ICI was born out of personal connections of a select few, but turned into blossoming institutional cooperation between several institutions, tens of academics and hundreds of students.

In 2014, through an open call, the first expedition of Finnish academics set out to learn more about the country, its colleges and future colleagues. The collaboration has since budded into new master’s programmes, digitalized libraries, functioning intranets, and dozens of trained professionals.

The objective of the Eritrea HEI ICI Programme is to support the development of sustainable institutional capacity in Eritrean higher education institutions. Based on a needs analysis for the
Eritrean Higher Education Sector, Human Resources Development and Institutional Capacity Development were identified as the priority areas to be addressed by Finland’s higher education support. For Eritrea, the development of human resources is a number one priority, and a cornerstone of its development strategy.

Higher education plays a critical role in creating a vibrant knowledge economy capable of meeting Eritrea’s sustainable development needs. The purpose of the programme has been to strengthen Eritrean higher education institutions (HEIs) through enhancing administrative, field-specific, methodological and pedagogical capacity.

Primarily, the cooperation has focused on four selected result areas:

Improved quality and relevance of higher education;
Enhanced management, leadership and governance capacities in higher education institutions;
Improved information management in teaching and learning;
Strengthened the role and relevance of the HEIs in development and society.

Eritrea has identified a need in competent teaching professionals in its higher education institutions. Many of the projects have sought to provide solutions to this very situation through curriculum development, student and staff mobility and training, research collaboration, and vast improvements in facilities.

The aim has been to establish institutional linkages and to create cooperation that would benefit the young people of Eritrea. The students of the partner HEIs as well as the surrounding society will gain from a more qualified and well trained labour force.

Within the five projects there have been significant, large scale, concrete results achieved. The projects and their main achievements are represented in the following.

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