Hawassa University (HU) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) on Wednesday inked a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a framework of cooperation between the two institutions.
The new deal makes Hawassa University the second academic institution in the continent, next to Johannesburg University, to secure this prestigious deal with the UNECA
Carlos Lopes (PhD), Executive Secretary of the UNECA and Yosef Mamo (Prof.), President of Hawassa University, signed the agreement.
The two institutions will be cooperating in the areas of academic and research activities.
“UNECA is looking forward to deepening its relationship with Hawassa University to support the promotion of Africa’s development agenda,” Lopes said. “We are expanding our collaboration with African universities, and are therefore looking forward to a very strong collaboration with Hawassa University.”
The MoU will extend interdisciplinary research and promote regional and continental engagement to support Africa’s transformation agenda spearheaded by UNECA in industrialization and HU in knowledge.
The joint academic and research activities will help bridge the research-policy gap, both to better inform academic research on pressing policy issues and to bring academic research more to the attention of policy-makers and governments.
Yosef expressed optimism about the outcome of the collaboration.
“We are very honored to be associated with this prestigious institution, UNECA, which has done a lot in Africa and is a beacon of social and economic development on the continent,” Yosef said. “We hope this collaboration will be a success story.”
The university will receive expertise and assistances from UNECA, senior diplomats will participate in the University for its Policy Study, Social science, International Relations, Pan-Africanism and other areas of field of studies, Yosef told The Reporter.
The university has also been visited by the Chairwoman of the African Union Commission, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma (PhD) recently.
During her visit, Zuma awarded ten top female students from different departments of HU, three pioneer female instructors and two middle level leaders. Meanwhile, the university—in honor of the Chairwoman’s visit—gave ten postgraduate scholarships for the AU which will be granted for ten African universities. On the same event, the largest conference facility of the university formerly named as the Graduation Hall has been renamed African Union Hall and was inaugurated by the Commissioner.