With the motto 'Sharing minds, Changing lives' VLIR-UOS captures the fact that building the capacity of academic institutions will enable societies to independently find solutions for local development problems. In this manner, the IUC programme comprises both (short and medium term) academic objectives, and (long) term developmental objectives. This concept is summarised in a simple figure.

VLIR-UOS applies the logical framework approach (LFA). In the IUC programme, this approach calls for the articulation of academic objectives (changes at the level of the partner university) and developmental objectives (changes at the level of the society).

Both originate from academic cooperation, bringing together experise and experience from two different settings thus 'Sharing minds'. This 'mind sharing' translates in the following effects:

  • (Research) capacity is built at the level of those academics units that benefit from an IUC partner programme. This may include human capacity (training), tangible capacity (equipment) as well as the building of organisational and social capital (ACADEMIC OBJECTIVE);
  • This mind sharing, and the use of the created capacity allows the generation of knowlegde for development (DEVELOPMENTAL OBJECTIVE).

Obviously, there may be a time-lag between both. Naturally, capacity needs to be created prior to actual research findings becoming available. Given its long term nature and depending on the base line situation, the IUC programme may, in particular during its second phase, generate the knowledge that addresses societal needs.

The figures underneath illustrates this two fold approach. Furthermore, the red arrows illustrate the following:

  • On the academic side:
  • capacity and practices are developed within the context of the IUC partnership. It is expected that these serve as models that would be replicated througout the university as a whole, in particular as regards policies and system development. This requires sufficient attention for intra-institutional learning and exchange;
  • ideally, the best models and practices could be adopted by other universities in the country.
  • On the developmental side:
  • knowledge normally result in recommendations for different target groups (policy makers, end users, practicioners etc);
  • such recommendations need to be taken up by others (extension workers etc) in order to ultimately lead to a change in practices that result in a better situation (income, health etc).

At some point on the developmental side, the responsibility of the academic institutons end in order to be taken up by other stakeholders (the dotted line). Put differently, in order to arrive at a 'Changing of lives' other stakeholders must take up their respective roles. Henceforth, the importance of stakeholder analysis and involvment at the stage of programme design and formulation.

In summary, if interventions supported by VLIR-UOS wish to impact on society, they must be planned in consultation with stakeholders that are able and willing to act upon the information and knowledge provided by the academic community.

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