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University Partnership For Disaster Risk Management In Ethiopia

by Portal Web Editor last modified Jan 10, 2013 08:54 AM
Higher Education for Development (HED), in cooperation with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID/Ethiopia), announces a new award for a university partnership in Ethiopia.
HED News

The University of Arizona (UA) receives award to create a regional center of excellence on disaster risk management and sustainable development in collaboration with Bahir Dar University (BDU).Other collaborating partners include: Ferguson-Lynch, a U.S. informatics firm that provides technical management for knowledge systems; TANGO, Intl., a U.S. private firm with extensive experience in Ethiopia in food security, development aid, and disaster management; Save the Children/Canada, which has an institutional relationship to Bahir Dar; and DPPA, the Ethiopian government agency responsible for disaster prevention and mitigation.  The proposed strategy for this project is to combine theoretical and methodological training with practical application within the reality of Ethiopia and in cooperation with NGO and government stakeholders.

The proposed project will provide graduate training for faculty at BDU through a combination of face-to-face interaction with UA counterpart faculty as well as distance-learning through a web-based portal, owned by USAID and co-managed by UA.  The partners will develop a 12-module graduate curriculum and establish a distance-learning platform that is complemented by faculty exchange between UA and BDU.  The portal will be used to manage the knowledge resources needed for the successful completion of the graduate program.

UA will also provide major capacity-building support for the Disaster Risk Management and Sustainable Development Center (DRMSD) at BDU.  UA faculty will develop annual internships for the graduate faculty.  In addition, the project will help develop the ability of DRMSD to offer a range of short-courses for community leaders and for disaster management specialists from government and NGOs.

The award-funded activities will culminate in a major national and international conference held at BDU, bringing the new Center into the national limelight and providing the opportunity to present faculty research.  This conference will establish BDU’s credentials as a leader in both disaster prevention and mitigation and in distance and web-based learning.

Through the Collaborative Partnerships program, USAID's Bureau for Economic Growth, Agriculture, and Trade/Office of Education (EGAT/ED) is assisting USAID Missions to mobilize the expertise and resources of U.S. and host country higher education institutions to strengthen host country organizational effectiveness. The overall goal is to improve the ability of higher education institutions to better contribute to host country development. The U.S. Agency for International Development has provided economic and humanitarian assistance worldwide for more than 40 years. For more information, please visit

The HED program engages the resources of higher education institutions in the United States and abroad for global social and economic development through human and institutional capacity building. HED assists the nation’s six major higher education associations and their members in partnering with USAID, as well as other development agencies and donor organizations. For more information about HED, please visit

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