Colección: La Educación
Número: (132-133) I,II
Recent OAS efforts in the development of public-private partnerships for
training and education
Based on the conclusions of previous studies and recent experiences, the OAS began work in mid 1998 to facilitate the organization and demonstration of inter-American public-private partnerships as a mechanism of cooperation to enhance training in areas of strategic significance for integration and development in the Americas.2 The training activities have focused on democratic participation, environment and sustainable development, education, science and technology, and trade and economic integration.
These training initiatives have fostered partnerships among chambers of commerce and industry, corporations, universities, technical institutes, foundations, international non-governmental associations and national as well as multilateral governmental organizations that support international training.
The activities have emphasized the development of innovative inter-American public-private partnerships to jointly support international courses, studies abroad, and academic and professional exchanges, through grants and educational loans.
The US-CIDI Specific Fund has contributed technical support for the organization of the training activities and has also contributed up to 1/3 of the cost of organizing and implementing the activities, with the balance contributed in cash or in kind by the other partner institutions. At least three countries are required to participate and the Fund has favored initiatives that benefit the smaller and less developed countries of the Hemisphere.
A basic work strategy has been to support ongoing educational partnerships so that they expand to include more Latin American and Caribbean participants, particularly from smaller and less developed countries.
During the last eighteen months the Training Component of the US/CIDI Specific Fund has contributed to the organization and support of twenty new or expanded inter-American training initiatives, representing a total additional investment of approximately US$ 2,050,000 by all participating partners. This work is helping to ascertain the viability of fostering and facilitating partnerships that involve:
- Work with international business associations, local chambers of commerce and industry, and individual corporations in training for:
- Small business development
- School to work transition and training of the young adults
- Business-education-community partnerships
- The management of technology
- International commercial arbitration
- Public awareness of the importance of tourism in small countries
- Fighting corruption through investigative journalism and the implementation of legal conventions.
- Collaboration with corporations, universities, technical institutes and foundations to assess and facilitate the application of new information technology for:
- Primary and secondary education
- Technical education and self-employment
- Higher education and continuous professional upgrading
- Small business exports and international strategic alliances
- Training to provide distance education and other services
- Work with financial institutions, academia and foundations to expand educational loans and mobilize local public and private support for students coming from other countries of the hemisphere:
- Developing guarantee funds for educational loans to low income students
- Expanding educational exchange programs
- Collaboration with universities, think tanks and business associations in training specialists for:
- The development of sustainable international trade corridors
- Education policy planning and instrumentation policy planning to increase competitiveness and employment in the smaller and less developed economies.