Anna Gover, ENQA Director
ENQA is delighted to continue its engagement in Africa as part of the consortium implementing the third phase of the Harmonisation, Quality Assurance and Accreditation in African Higher Education Initiative (HAQAA3).
HAQAA3 is an ambitious continuation and expansion of the work accomplished under HAQAA1 (2015-18) and HAQAA2 (2019-2022). The five-year Initiative encompasses not only capacity building for internal and external quality assurance, but also support for advancing the African Credit Transfer System, the Pan-African Quality Assurance Agency, continental and regional integration, and data collection to inform policy making in higher education.
ENQA’s role in the Initiative is to support the coordination of external reviews and consultancy visits at quality assurance agencies across Africa, building on the experiences of the previous two rounds of activities. The focus in HAQAA3 will be on engaging a greater number of agencies in the exercise, building the capacity for review coordination in our African counterparts, and exploring the mechanisms and consequences for compliance judgements in the context of the proposed Pan-African Quality Assurance Agency. ENQA will also contribute to training for external quality assurance, support policy dialogue between Africa and other world regions, and coordinate a review of the African Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance (ASG-QA).
To coordinate our contribution to the HAQAA Initiative, we are pleased to welcome a new staff member to the secretariat: Luis Miranda joined the team on 25 September and brings with him experience of working in other European associations in the higher education sector, as well as supporting the development of one of the European University Alliances. Those of you attending ENQA’s General Assembly in October will have the opportunity to meet him there.
ENQA’s work outside Europe contributes to our strategic objective to be a reference point for quality assurance in the international context, by both contributing to and learning from developments outside Europe. ENQA is a strong position to share the successes and mistakes from 20 years of supporting the development of the European quality assurance framework in the context of the Bologna Process. We also seek to bring benefits for the European quality assurance community through facilitating a deeper understanding of the African context with its huge diversity of systems, stages of development, and strong regional dynamics. This work complements the relationships that many of our members already have with agencies and institutions in Africa.
Global knowledge and understanding of each other’s quality assurance systems is a crucial foundation for trust, mobility and recognition internationally. ENQA has already worked extensively in Africa and the ASEAN region, and there is strong alignment between the ESG, the ASG-QA and the ASEAN Quality Assurance Framework. ENQA also continues to develop and strengthen links with quality assurance networks in the Gulf region, the USA and Latin America. We look forward to continuing these relationships and ensuring a relevant and fruitful exchange for our members, affiliates and partners.
HAQAA3 is part of the EU Youth Mobility for Africa flagship of the Global Gateway Africa-Europe Investment Package. The flagship initiative promotes opportunities for learning mobility on the continent and between Africa and the EU. It supports cooperation in higher education and skills development, strengthens regional and continental harmonisation mechanisms, while promoting Africa as a study destination. Thereby, the initiative contributes to youth empowerment for sustainable employability and active citizenship. HAQAA3 is implemented by a consortium consisting of OBREAL Global, the Association of African Universities, ENQA and DAAD and will run from 2023 to 2028.