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The average salary of a teacher or professor is vastly insufficient to ensure a decent standard of living. The difficult working conditions and meager salaries breed corruption among teaching staff, in particular at the tertiary level.

Introduction: Education suffers as state economic development wars escalate

These conditions have considerably devalued the profession and demotivated a growing number of students graduating from teaching institutions. Many change their career path after graduation or leave the profession after only a few years of teaching, moving to better-remunerated and more socially esteemed professions such as secretarial work or interpreting.

This deficiency is particularly acute in certain subjects, including English, economics, and computer science. The disappearance or disrepair of schools, as well as increasingly high school fees, have led to considerable inequality in education. Children from disadvantaged backgrounds also tend to be concentrated in low-quality schools or overcrowded classes. As the average child-bearing age has fallen, a growing number of women have dropped out of the school and university system. This gender discrimination is fed by social poverty.

In increasing numbers of poorer households, parents give priority to educating their boys, whom they consider better long-term investments, at the expense of their girls, who are pressured to live as stay-at-home mothers dependent on the families of their future husbands. Lastly, economic and social difficulties have pushed several million Uzbeks at least three million in alone to work abroad, in particular in Russia.

The Brexit: What implications for Africa?

The success of foreign assistance depends heavily on incentives in recipient countries. In Uzbekistan, the state has a record of keeping a tight grip on the education sector, which it has viewed as strategic for its independence and nation-building. Foreign education assistance must go beyond engaging with the Ministry of Education to tap into local knowledge.

Moreover, the government, despite its firm control over society, does not always have the technological and organizational resources to evaluate the needs and difficulties of the sector, define its priorities, or implement local-level reforms. Under both late President Karimov and current President Mirziyoyev, the base—that is, teachers, parents and students—has rarely been included in the process of determining reforms; as a result, reforms have often been ill-received.

Many government programs, whether or not supported by foreign donors, have thus remained simple declarations of intent. Furthermore, by defining broad objectives that aim at fundamental reforms but that are nonetheless insufficiently connected to the local context, foreign donors have risked having their projects usurped and instrumentalized by the authorities to domestic ends. Education has been a particular focus of EU assistance in Central Asia. Uzbekistan is involved in four EU education assistance programs:. Tempus, which promotes university cooperation;. Erasmus Mundus, which promotes student and academic staff mobility at all levels of tertiary education through joint higher education programs and individual scholarships;.

The Central Asia Research and Education Network CAREN , which seeks to connect some 1 million Central Asian students and researchers, as well as universities and research institutions, in the areas of telemedicine, distance learning, disaster risk management, water resource management, and geo-hazard potential of retreating glaciers. But even this approach has inadvertently created a dichotomy between the former Soviet system, which is said to be deficient and outdated, and a European-Western system construed as modern, progressive, and a return to normality.

UNU-WIDER : Book : Advancing Development

This lack of local ownership has led some Uzbek stakeholders to resist reforms suggested by donors. Firstly, for many teachers, concepts such as student-centered learning are unsustainable, and therefore unrealizable, unless there is a significant improvement in their social conditions: an increase in salaries, a lightening of the workload, political liberalization, etc. Several scholars have thus noted the very limited impact of European or other Western projects that have pressed teachers to switch from teacher-centered to child-centered learning.

In Uzbekistan, education reforms cannot be implemented effectively without significant prior economic progress, which is necessary to enable the considerable investment required in the education sector.

Working Papers & Publications

Without a notable improvement in the social conditions of local stakeholders—the teachers, as well as the large number of households for which access to education has become a heavy financial burden—or any real political will from the government to turn from ideologized instruction to the training of students with freer and more critical minds, such programs are not likely to succeed.

Under the present umbrella of the European Union, the U. Bilateral trade agreements signed between the EU, on one hand, and other countries and regional communities, on the other, would also have to be renegotiated. Within the European Union, the U. The share of U.

The Brexit, followed with the annulment of trade agreements, could accentuate said decline. For instance, scholars from North-West University argue that the Brexit would cause a 0. Another key issue that could be affected by the Brexit is one of agricultural subsidies. For years, the U. In a situation where the U. In sum, there are a number of ways through which the Brexit could have an impact on African countries, starting with its impact on the global economy, reduced British outwardness when it comes to global development issues, as well as decreased bilateral development assistance and trade.

They are all difficult to quantify but broadly point to a negative impact on African countries. The Brexit referendum is rather inopportune as African countries are facing serious external shocks such as the fall in commodity prices, an economic slowdown in China, and higher external borrowing costs. There is not much that they can do on the external front that leaves adequate and timely domestic policies the priority. It has taken post-colonial investment in education and other public goods to move West African economies, and tropical Africa generally, closer to the prospect of a substantial growth of labour-intensive manufacturing, if international competition permits it.

The large-scale use of coercion was the basis for the construction of white-ruled economies that, especially in South Africa, eventually became profitable enough for a partly politically-impelled policy of import-substituting industrialisation to achieve some success. Thus, the rents extracted from African labourers were channelled into structural change, although the process became self-defeating as it progressed, contributing to the fall of apartheid.

A final legacy of the colonial period has a rather unclear relationship to colonial policy, i. The colonial origins of comparative development: An empirical investigation. American Economic Review 91, no.

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Increasing the Effectiveness of Education Assistance in Uzbekistan

In Colonialism in Africa, , vol. Gann and Peter Duignan, — Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Amin, Samir. Paris: Editions de Minuit. How to make a tragedy: On the alleged effects of ethnicity on growth. Journal of International Development 20, no.

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Gareth Austin and Kaoru Sugihara, London: Macmillan. Mode of production or mode of cultivation: Explaining the failure of European cocoa planters in competition with African farmers in colonial Ghana. In Cocoa pioneer fronts since The role of smallholders, planters and merchants , ed. Clarence-Smith, Basingstoke, UK: Macmillan. Journal of International Development 8, no. Labour, land and capital in Ghana: From slavery to free labour in Asante, Rochester: Rochester University Press. Labour and land in Ghana, A shifting ratio and an institutional revolution.

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