Gondar- Leicester Link

Project Leaders: Mark Goodwin and Annette Cashmore.

In May 2008, Dr Mark Goodwin visited Gondar in the north-east of Ethiopia as part of GENIE’s project to maintain and develop the link between the University of Leicester and Gondar University.

Students from Gondar talking with Prof Cashmore

In order to meet its Millennium Development Goals, Ethiopia has ambitious plans to expand its higher education sector. GENIE is part of an ambitious and innovative partnership programme that aims to facilitate exchanges and collaboration involving academics and students from Gondar University and the University of Leicester.

The Gondar–Leicester link has benefits for both sides, in the form of the sharing of management and teaching skills, research opportunities and improved cultural understanding. GENIE is involved in establishing a number of specific initiatives
1. A PhD programme. Three academics from Gondar University will visit Leicester to start PhDs from September to December 2008, before returning to Ethiopia to continue under the joint supervision of academics in Leicester and Gondar.

2. Teaching and learning. GENIE is working with the University of Leicester’s Staff Development Centre to develop an online Community of Academic Practice, which will allow staff at the two institutions to share their experience and develop effective approaches to teaching and management in higher education.

3. Education for sustainable development. GENIE is involved in developing the Sustainable Futures module, an inter-disciplinary programme produced by the University of Leicester’s Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) Forum. The intention is to develop links between staff and students in Gondar and Leicester as part of the teaching of the module.
Gondar University developed out of the Gondar College of Medical Sciences, the oldest medical school in Ethiopia. The Gondar–Leicester link was established in 1996 by Professor Mike Silverman of the University of Leicester.

The city of Gondar is a popular tourist destination in Ethiopia, in part because of the collection of castles that form the Royal Enclosure and have led to the city being labelled the ‘Camelot of Africa’. It has a population of over 150,000 and is the regional centre for over three million people.

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