This platform brings together policymakers who recently attended a regional conference for the Central and Eastern Africa Regions on “Digital Economy and E-Government: Bridging the Digital Divide” from 19 – 21 February 2019 in Nairobi, Kenya. The main objective of this policy dialogue was to enhance the capacity African governments and policy makers in e-government solutions to improve the efficiency of key public services. The conference thus improved their knowledge of e-government and discussed policy options to improve the quality and efficacy of public service. The topics discussed aimed at sensitizing participants on ICT based quality solutions such as the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) and its impact on the future of work in Africa; big data in action for governments; digital identity and its applications; and block chain for development. Discussions focused on ways of leveraging on technology; digital economy for regional integration; government workspace modernization; data protection and regulation; and smart factories.
L’Institut africain de développement (ECAD), le département des Services fiduciaires (SNFI), le département du Contrôle financier (FICF) en étroite collaboration avec le Bureau national de la Banque africaine de développement au Niger (CONE), ont organisé à Niamey, au Niger, du 9 au 12 juillet 2018, un atelier de renforcement des capacités au profit des cellules d’exécution et des structures de l’administration publique impliquées dans la mise en œuvre des projets cofinancés par la Banque.
L’objectif de cette clinique fiduciaire est d’analyser en profondeur les difficultés rencontrées dans l’exécution du portefeuille du Niger, et de discuter des mesures d’amélioration, notamment des questions liées aux acquisitions, à la gestion financière et aux décaissements afin d’accroître la performance de l’exécution des projets et d’atteindre les objectifs de développement. L’atelier répond ainsi à l’une des principales recommandations de la dernière revue du portefeuille conduite en avril 2018.
Dans son allocution d’ouverture, Mahaman Aba, secrétaire général adjoint au ministère du Plan du Niger, a exprimé sa reconnaissance à la Banque pour l’organisation de cet atelier. Cette clinique fiduciaire permet en effet de répondre de façon immédiate aux différentes préoccupations et de résoudre les problèmes majeurs liés à la gestion et aux fonctions fiduciaires.
Plus tôt, Nouridine Kane Dia, responsable pays de la Banque pour le Niger, a, dans son mot de bienvenue, souligné que cet atelier s’inscrivait bien dans le cadre global de la Stratégie de renforcement des capacités nationales de la Banque africaine de développement. Il a également traduit l’engagement de la Banque à accompagner les efforts de ses pays membres régionaux pour assurer une mise en œuvre efficace et efficiente des projets.
Pour le cas particulier du Niger, cette clinique vise à améliorer de manière significative la performance des opérations et la qualité du portefeuille de la Banque. Nouridine Kane Dia a précisé qu’à la fin de la formation, des résultats spécifiques étaient attendus, comme la bonne exécution des plans de passation des marchés, la tenue d’une comptabilité de projet conformément aux normes professionnelles, la gestion rationnelle et efficace des ressources de projets, la soumission des rapports d’audit des projets dans les délais requis, l’exécution effective des recommandations des plans d’action issus des différentes revues effectuées par la Banque dans les domaines de la passation des marchés, de la gestion financière et du décaissement, ainsi que l’augmentation du volume de décaissement dans les projets.
Enfin, le responsable pays de la Banque pour le Niger a vivement exhorté les participants à prendre part activement aux travaux, tout en espérant que l’atelier constitue un moment privilégié d’échanges et de partage d’expériences avec les experts de la Banque.
Animée par Ba Samba-Dioum (SNFI), Fulbert Egnile (FICF) et Sylvain Coulibaly Gnegnery (SNFI), cette clinique fiduciaire a regroupé près de 70 participants issus des cellules d’exécution des opérations de la Banque, ainsi que des cadres des ministères de tutelle. La coordination et la facilitation de l’atelier ont été pris en charge par Hortense Tchié (ECAD).
In line with the High 5s, the African Development Institute (ECAD) in collaboration with the African Legal Support Facility (ALSF), the Eastern Africa Regional Center (RDGE) and the Sudan Country Office (COSD) conducted a capacity building workshop on “Scaling up Public Private Partnerships for the Energy Sector” for practitioners in Khartoum, Sudan from 8-12 July 2018.
The objective of the workshop was to strengthen the legal and financial capacities of key PPP stakeholders in Sudan on how to initiate, implement and maintain PPPs in energy Sector. PPPs are innovative financing mechanisms in meeting the growing demand for infrastructure investment in Africa estimated to exceed US $50 to 70 billion annually. Thus, the workshop is crucial in generating and disseminating knowledge to transform Sudan’s economy, build enduring institutions and strengthen policy-making capacity.
Based on demand, the five-day workshop training specifically covered critical topics and contents on PPP policy, legal, regulatory and institutional framework. The workshop also focused on project identification, structuring, procurement, feasibility, insurance, risk management and financing. Case studies, exercises, simulations, group discussions, e-Learning, videos, presentations and role-plays were held to enhance effective knowledge transfer during the workshop.
A total of forty participants (40% being women) were drawn from the Ministries of Finance and Economic Planning, Water and Energy Resources, Transport, Industry as well as the Private Sector and Civil Society.
In his opening remarks, the country’s Under-Secretary Abdallah Ibrahim, said that he was impressed with the professional training accorded to the PPP Unit. With the lifting of sanctions, he underscored that sound policies combined with political support were crucial in driving growth and development in Sudan. He further highlighted the major role played by the private sector. Abdallah Ibrahim extended his country’s appreciations to the African Development Bank for delivering a high quality workshop.
The Director of PPP Unit in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, Hayat Hassan Shamat Salih, echoed the importance of the African Development Institute in disseminating knowledge in public-private partnerships in Sudan. She outlined that since 2015, the government adopted comprehensive laws and programs to improve the climate for PPPs and unlocking private sector barriers.
Participants were encouraged not only to seize the opportunity but also to leverage the knowledge and skills to be acquire in order to shape the destiny of the country through PPPs.
Productive sessions are the hallmark of the intellectual discourse. Participants expressed worthiness of the timely intervention
The Program and Knowledge Management Division of the African Development Institute (ECAD.1) has launched its new approach to building capacity for project implementation in Abuja, Nigeria. The newly minted Institutional Capacity and Fiduciary Clinic (ICFC) is a holistic approach that combines country capacity building, institutional capacity and leadership capacity of project staff. The first workshop of its kind took place in Abuja, Nigeria from 2 – 5 July 2018 in collaboration with the Nigeria Country Department (RDNG). Though the core mandate of the African Development Bank is development financing, ECAD recognizes that achieving the High 5 Agenda of the Bank depends critically on the depth and wealth of our knowledge and capacity, the development challenges facing the Continent and individual African Regional Member Countries (RMCs).
In addition to the previous approach that focuses on providing training on fiduciary issues of project implementation, the new approach adds strengthening capacity of the wider system in which projects are situated. These include formal institutional arrangements such as policies, laws, rules and regulations as well as informal norms, customs and other informal arrangements affecting development effectiveness. The new approach also captures the organisational arrangements and individual knowledge, skills and attitudes in project implementation. The overarching aim is to support, build and maintain strong interrelationship between actors in the sector/system. For this to work well, focus must be both on the interrelations between the organizations and individuals and groups of individuals.
The objective of the just ended ICFC workshop in Nigeria was to reinforce the capacity of projects staff involved in the execution, management and follow up of projects and programmes financed by the Bank. Additionally, the workshop aims at strengthening the institutional capacity to deliver better on development issues in Nigeria. The Workshop combined skill development on fiduciary issues (procurement, contract management, disbursement and financial management) with soft organisational skills that are equally important in project implementation. It was also a forum to discuss wider economic issues in the external environment in which our projects are situated including leadership, team building, time management, change management and communication.
Welcoming participants on behalf of the Senior Director Ebrima Faal, Country Operations Manager, Late Lawson reiterated that though Nigeria’s portfolio remains healthy, one cannot deny the fact that the country continues to wrestle with a number of issues relating to project implementation. He welcomed the timely launch of the new approach in Nigeria and highlighted the critical importance of the workshop in supporting the management of Bank-funded projects in the country. In his opening remarks, Chidozie Emenuga, Officer-in Charge of ECAD assured participants of the Department’s commitment to providing timely and relevant capacity that makes institutions stronger and better positioned to deliver on the Bank’s projects.
Explaining the objectives of the workshop and the rationale for the institutional capacity building approach, Foster Ofosu, Capacity Development Officer at the Bank discussed the need to balance technical skills and intangible organisational skills in building institutional capacity. He urged the participants to take full advantage of new approach to enhance their skills to manage project implementation challenges.
Sixty-two participants drawn from the Bank’s Agriculture sector projects in Nigeria participated in the workshop. The participants expressed their satisfaction with the approach and urged the Bank to provide more managerial skills in addition to technical skills needed to manage fiduciary issues in project implementation.
L’objectif principal de cette formation est d’équiper les économistes des pays membres régionaux (PMR) de compétences avec divers modèles macroéconomiques qu’ils pourront ensuite appliquer à leurs environnements politiques. Les compétences ainsi acquises leur permettront d’aider leurs pays à formuler des politiques éprouvées, dérivant des modèles et des résultats de leur estimation.
L’accent sera donc mis sur les modèles DSGE (Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium) car ceux-ci permettent une compréhension et une modélisation claires de l’interaction de nombreuses décisions macroéconomiques dans des contextes dynamiques et d’équilibre. Ces modèles permettront aux participants de tester les réponses économiques à divers chocs et politiques, de mener des expériences politiques, et d’évaluer les impacts économiques de leurs plans de transformation à moyen et à long terme. En outre, ces modèles capturent les principales particularités des économies africaines, telles que l’abondance des ressources, les liens entre l’investissement dans les infrastructures, le financement et la croissance, les frictions dans l’accès aux marchés internationaux des capitaux et bien d’autres.
Capacity Focus is a biannual magazine published by the African Development Institute. Its objective is to provide a forum to share opinions, view and insights on various issues pertinent to capacity development in Africa. The articles of the magazine also aim to reinforce the role of the African Development Bank (AfDB) as the leading development enabler on the continent. The magazine presents capacity development approaches and strategies, shares the views of executive directors on capacity development as well analysis and perspectives from contributors from Regional Member Countries of the AfDB including different sectors and themes related to the AfDB’s interventions. Other items bring to the fore the importance of exchanging and brokering knowledge with a special emphasis on the e-learning and the communities of practice. Articles also report on the Institute’s flagship learning activities including workshops, seminar policy dialogue policy initiatives, partnership and networking
To reach a reasonable level of sustainable development, every society needs to integrate technologies in a carefully planned manner. As Africa pursues an agenda of transformation, there is an urgent need to bridge the knowledge and capacity gaps in many countries and sectors. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) called for a new global partnership for development using science and technology to address the problems facing the poor. The governments of many African countries recognized the need to reorient their national science, technology and innovation policies in order to serve developmental needs more effectively and coherently. A recent report jointly published by the United Nations Commission for Africa, the African Development Bank, the African Union and the United Nations Development Programme points to noteworthy progress on technology indicators (UNECA, 2015) largely attributable to great advances made in the diffusion of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in Africa.
As Africa pursues the transformation agenda, there is urgent need to bridge the knowledge and capacity gap that exists in many countries and sectors. For any society to reach a reasonable level of sustainable development, a carefully planned integration of technologies would be required. To achieve this level of technological advancement, Africa needs to create innovative processes not only in the acquisition or development of new technologies, but also in the diffusion, so that it eventually finds social and economic application throughout the system.
By Foster Ofosu, Capacity Development Specialist at the African Development Bank Group
Whereas developed countries have exploited innovation milieus (system) to develop new technologies and improve on old ones, in the case of Africa the path to technological development has been one of acquisition, utilisation, adoption and (it is hoped) diffusion. To attain the objective of both social and economic inclusiveness requires recognition of the role of knowledge in the achievement of the ultimate objective of poverty reduction and sustainable development. An understanding of the African socio-cultural environment and its application in the development agenda should have a far-reaching impact on African societies.
ICT developments in Africa over the last decade have opened doors to skills and capacity development, and are today providing the continent with the tools to leapfrog the traditional development trajectory by adopting appropriate technologies. On the back of this, collaborative efforts in the development of innovation at national level have been the subject of discussion among policymakers, entrepreneurs, academics, practitioners and researchers. Such discussions have led to a proliferation of models such as the innovation clusters and national systems of innovation. The focus of these models all work towards developing the innovative capacities of organisations within the national and, in some cases, regional concentrations. Although some of these models have found practical application in, for example, the explosion of innovation centres of excellence in ICT across Africa, the exact linkages between and among the differing actors begets a consensus and commonality of purpose.
Today there are well over 200 technology hubs across Africa aimed at promoting ‘technopreneurship’. One witnesses interesting stories about individuals and small startups making headlines for mobile applications. I commend all the young ‘technoprenurs’ putting Africa on the global innovation and technology map. But that is one side of the story. Successful innovations extend beyond creativity.
The second part of the story is the utilisation and adoption of these technologies even within the societies in which they are developed. There have been successful stories of commercialisation of technologies made in Africa. Notable among them is M-Pesa, which has revolutionised and expanded financial service delivery in Africa through the innovative use of mobile phones. In the healthcare sector, mPedigree, a Ghanaian tech firm, is making significant impact in the mobile anti-counterfeit drug system. We are yet to witness such large scale diffusion of technologies in the education and training sector.
Technological change is at the heart of social and economic transformation more so in the modern knowledge society. Unlike industrial technologies, the knowledge economy requires technologies as input and output of value creation. Developments in ICT should move beyond creativity to successful adoption and diffusion of Africa-made technologies throughout society. How can this be achieved?
For ICT to promote inclusive growth and sustainable development there is a need to move the landscape from stakeholders within nations and between nations working independently to a more collaborative system of innovations across sectors. Africa needs to explore new avenues to enhance technological innovations. Africa should create an environment that will facilitate local, national and international initiatives to develop new technologies for tackling some of the numerous socio-economic challenges. Sustainable development also requires sustainable technologies that are economically viable, socially needed, relevant and accepted.
Whereas the individual technopreneurs and the private sector should remain the main source of technological innovation, it is important for African societies to develop a system of linkages at the level of policy (government), international organisations, universities, research institutions and civil society to create, apply and diffuse ICT for skills development and capacity building in Africa.
In accordance with the Paris Declaration and Accra Agenda for Action, the African Development Bank has made capacity development an imperative for development in Africa. Capacity development is at the core of the activities of development stakeholders, including governments, development partners, the private sector as well as civil society.. The launch of the Capacity Focus is part of this effort to effectively share knowledge on capacity development in Africa. The aim is to bring capacity development issues that are relevant to Africa to a wider audience than heretofore, by connecting knowledge, learning, and innovation
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has embraced a new approach to development that puts innovation at the centre in the delivery of Bank projects at both the staff and client levels. The Bank sees its role as not only that of a financier and policy advisor but also as a promoter of knowledge and innovation.
By Foster N. Ofosu, Capacity Development Specialist. African Development Bank Group
This is implied in most areas of its operations, as indicated by the Ten Year Strategy of 2013 -2022, as well as its sector strategies. Recently, the Bank has established a next-generation approach whose goal is to unleash a new wave of development and growth shared by all. The vision is captured in five objectives – the High 5 Goals: feeding Africa, lighting up Africa, industrializing Africa integrating Africa, and improving the quality of life in Africa.
Two observable demographic trends in Africa today are the rising proportion of youth and the high skill levels. With almost 200 million people aged between 15 and 24, Africa has the youngest population in the world – and it keeps growing rapidly and getting better educated. On the other side of the good story, African countries are at the forefront of global economic growth. So on one hand we have a growing educated population and growing economies. This, however, is as far as the good news goes. The problem in Africa may not be the lack of employment as measured by current global methodologies, but rather underemployment and lack of decent jobs. Therefore, when discussing the creation of jobs for the youth, emphasis has to be put on decent, well-paying jobs.
The African Development Bank’s vision of expanding opportunities and unlocking potentials will only be achieved through a retooling of knowledge and skill-sets. Today’s youth have a responsibility for delivering on the High 5 Goals. To realize this vision, a plan for training, incubating financing, and implementation is needed. Youth engagement throughout the design and implementation process is critical for success.
To promote the empowerment of young Africans to engage in the development process, the African Development Bank seeks to contribute to youth employment through entrepreneurship and capacity development on the Continent. The role of the AfDB in this process is envisaged as
ICT should be recognized as both an input, and output of innovation. The emergence of technology hubs across the Continent, as well as the growing efforts by young African “techpreneurs” in developing mobile applications to solve health, education, financial inclusion, agriculture, and other socio-economic challenges all point to evidence of ICTs as outputs of the innovation and entrepreneurship processes.
I believe Africa not only needs to do more in utilizing ICT in the development of skills and entrepreneurs, but also has to manage ICT properly as an input to achieve the development goals as set by the AfDB. For example, techpreneurs should receive support that fosters the adoption and diffusion of mobile applications, while simultaneously allowing them to continue growing their ventures. Currently, there is growing evidence that although individual technpreneurs are winning awards and being celebrated outside the Continent, the adoption and diffusion of home-grown mobile applications need to be further supported and promoted. Another example is the use of ICT for developing entrepreneurial skills and supporting start-ups. Though ICT has been successfully deployed in formal education at various levels, there is still scope to expand the use of technologies to train young entrepreneurs.
To achieve the desired outcome of leveraging ICTS as both inputs and outputs, Africa needs to develop the capacity of its youth to innovate. Innovative capacity holds the key to unlocking Africa’s potential and achieving inclusive growth and sustainable development. The Innovative Capacity Approach includes a series of activities aimed at building the abilities of African youth to develop home-grown technological, marketing, processing, and organizational innovations for value addition. The concept of innovative capacity creates avenues that enable individuals and organisations to
In the context of entrepreneurship, we need to build the capacity (and support) in various realms of innovation:
To address some of these issues, the AfDB has recently initiated the Innovation and Youth Entrepreneurship Support Programme (iYes), which will back African youth in creating and growing innovative ventures and technologies. The capacity- building interventions include
The iYes Programme makes use of distance and eLearning as part of the process, in addition to face-to-face interventions. Additionally, the programme is designed to address the innovative capacity gaps in the four areas and at the same time emphasise the element of growth to ensure the commercialisation and diffusion of home-grown technologies for the achievement of the High 5 Goals.