Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa
Conseil pour le développement de la recherche en sciences sociales en Afrique
Conselho para o Desenvolvimento da Pesquisa em Ciências Sociais em África
مجلس تنمية البحوث الإجتماعية في أفريقيا


Public and Private Domains and the Social Role of Universities in Africa

Teresa Cruz e Silva. Public and Private Domains and the Social Role of Universities in Africa. Dakar, CODESRIA, Lectures Series n° 5, 2010, 18 p. ISBN: 978-2-86978-313-3

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The backstage around which the scientific discussion of the 12th CODESRIA General Assembly is organized: Governing the African Public Sphere, makes a strong case for revisiting the theoretical approaches on the concept of ‘public sphere’ in Africa, within a global context of social, economic and political changes with impacts on the current conjuncture of the continent, since the last decades of the 20th century. In this process, the reshaping of the capitalist order has brought about profound alterations with ramifications on the public sphere and the traditional role of the state, providing by this way a justification for the academic debates around issues such as the public and the private, the narrowing of the public sphere and the role of the state.

The neoliberal domination and the prioritization of the private ruled by the market have deeply affected the educational models, and produced significant alterations on the social role of higher education institutions in Africa. Despite the enormous adversities facing higher education institutions, as knowledge producers, these institutions play a pivotal role in addressing innovative approaches to African development. In this way, the universities maintain themselves as privileged sites, not only for debate, but also for struggles over power and access to resources. This Claude Ake Lecture discusses the social role of African higher education institutions in the challenges of the new public sphere. The text also focus on the role CODESRIA should play to stimulate and/or reinforce a pedagogical project rooted in the indissociability of teaching and research, based on excellence.

Teresa Cruz e Silva, Mozambican, is currently Associate Professor at
Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (UEM) Maputo. Her teaching experience
covers the social history of Mozambique and methods of research in social
sciences. Her areas of research interest include: nationalism and liberation
struggles in Mozambique and southern Africa; religion and society, youth
and social identities. Her collaborative work with other universities, as
guest researcher, guest professor and external examiner has taken her to
Brazil and South Africa. She has published extensively on the social history
of Mozambique and served on the editorial boards of several journals.
Teresa Cruz e Silva is a member of WLSA Mozambique, director of Centre
for Social Studies, Aquino de Bragança (Mozambique), and member of the
Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa –
CODESRIA (where she was a member of the Executive Committee (2002-
2005) and President (2005-2008).

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