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Transforming Higher Agricultural Education for Sustainable Food Systems in Egypt: Insights from an Erasmus+ Project
The Nordic Africa Institute, Research Unit. Department of Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden; Department of Economics and Rural Development, Arish University, Al-Arish, Egypt.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6764-1887
Department of Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden.
2023 (English)In: Youth Commitment to Sustainable Food Systems: A Mediterranean Overview, Paris: International Centre for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) , 2023, 41, p. 44-55Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Summary of the key messages: The following policy recommendations can help moving government and society in Egypt towards a transformation in the higher agricultural education (HAE) system to advance food system sustainability:

1. HAE institutions in Egypt should develop better strategic alignment to the national strategic priorities for agricultural development, and strengthen linkages with stakeholders, employers, and the productive sectors in order to make the expected contribution to national agricultural innovation systems.

2. HAE institutions should consider setting up innovative mechanisms for monitoring the jobmarket and adapting their curricula in response to changing employment opportunities and technological advances. In connection with this, there is a need for increasing work practice programmes and career training by offering trainings or internships to students to gain more skills and experience for the future job market.

3. HAE institutions need to move away from a mere transfer of information to the development of students’ skills in accessing and applying available information for solving sustainability issues within the food system. Therefore, system thinking and interdisciplinary approaches towards HAE are needed to consider the entire food system and treat dimensions of food system sustainability as an “indivisible whole”.

4. HAE programmes and curricula should be designed in ways that provide students with knowledge in different fields and from across disciplines in relation to food system sustainability, since transformation towards a more sustainable food system in practice requires integrated knowledge and understanding of science, economics, the environment and social values. Especially, HAE institutions must incorporate the concepts of sustainability and social responsibility into all HAE programmes and curricula in order to root the ideas and values of sustainable agriculture into students.

5. A transition towards sustainability in the food system requires HAE institutions to have acadre of educators with a new mindset and the relevant knowledge and pedagogic skills to provide students with up-to-date scientific knowledge and practical skills that increase their technical expertise and ability to apply knowledge in practice and adopt new and creative solutions to food system challenges.

6. Egyptian HAE institutions need to open themselves up towards international sources of knowledge and strengthen their partnerships and collaborations with international universities. Developing such partnerships can help Egyptian HAE institutions promote access to quality academic programmes, strengthen inter-regional, inter-cultural exchange and collaboration to create and reconfigure human capital and provide more capacity for research and teaching.

7. Making these shifts in policy stance operational requires reformed institutional frameworks, high-level political commitment and an inclusive vision of a sustainable food system. More flexible HAE policies and practices through modifying institutional governance structures for greater institutional flexibility and increased responsiveness to stakeholders are crucial.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Paris: International Centre for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) , 2023, 41. p. 44-55
Series
Watch Letter ; 41
Keywords [en]
Egypt; Higher agricultural education; Food System
National Category
Agricultural and Veterinary sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:nai:diva-2725OAI: oai:DiVA.org:nai-2725DiVA, id: diva2:1715666
Available from: 2022-12-02 Created: 2022-12-02 Last updated: 2023-05-21Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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