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Knowledge Transfer in Design Education for Creative Enterprises in East Africa


Project Description

The Center for Business Innovation and Training (CBiT) was subcontracted to offer technical support to the Knowledge Transfer in Design Education for Creative Enterprises in East Africa. This project was implemented in partnership with the British Council, the Margaret Trowell School of Industrial and Fine Art (MTSIFA), Makerere University, together with the Department of Fine Art, Kenyatta University in Kenya and the School of Design, Northumbria university, UK, under the Education Partnerships in Africa (EPA) program.
In appreciation of the fact that university curriculum is dynamic and subject to revision with a view to tailor contents and quality to suit the clientele, the participating institutions sought to develop a client-oriented curriculum, in a bid to strengthen their outreach with business/social enterprises in the art and design fields. Consequently, they realized a curriculum that facilitated linkages, dissemination and transfer of knowledge to the art and design business enterprises through community-based practical training in design education. This was identified as essential for the enhancement of competitive and sustainable skills. Businesses and social enterprises involved from the art and design were faced with challenges of lack of market, low quality products, and lack of technical skills in product development for competitiveness.
The project focused on improving the viability of creative enterprises in Uganda and Kenya, with professional and academic support from the UK partner. It aimed at empowering the urban unemployed youth and adults in selected districts of Uganda, the suburb of Nairobi and Kampala by tapping into their creative potentials coupled with business skills, to enable them to develop life skills.
A sustainable business-oriented model for imparting practical skills in the art and design-oriented industries/enterprises – Hybrid Product Development Model, was employed. The model served to prepare university graduates to meet the needs of the communities in respect of knowledge offered in their college programs. Interaction and cooperation between HEIs, industries, retailers and creative professionals was enhanced and design education and technological innovation successfully integrated in higher education institutions and effectively channeled for industrial and private sector development.