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Mak PIM CoE Acquires Modern Video Conferencing Facility & Furniture Worth USD 77,000

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By Jane Anyango

Makerere University Centre of Excellence in Public Investment Management (PIM CoE) on 4th October, 2021 launched an assortment of IT equipment and furniture worth USD 77,000 (approximately UGX 277million) funded by the World Bank in collaboration with the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).

The WB and FCDO supported the university with a grant of USD 810,000 to undertake a number of activities including training, research and capacity building at the School of Economics. Part of the capacity building is the procurement of IT equipment and furniture.

The equipment was commissioned by the Principal, College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS) Prof. Eria Hisali on behalf of the University Management witnessed by representatives from the Government of Uganda and the World Bank online.

Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali addresses participants before commissioning the equipment.
Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali addresses participants before commissioning the equipment.

The equipment launched includes a state-of-the-art video conferencing facility theVivitek86” collaborative and interactive flat Novo touch screen that cost USD 34,000. On the screen, you can teach, split and have different people connected to it wirelessly. You can also demonstrate and annotate your presentation on this screen.  The smart board has an inbuilt camera that can zoom in and reset videos at any time.

Other IT equipment launched include12 Computers, 4 laptops, 2 LCD projectors, and an all-in-one printer scanner copier all procured at USD 27,000.

The centre also procured office furniture comprising 5 office desks and 5 office tables, 40 training chairs and 20 training tables and a 20-seater boardroom table all worth USD 16,000.

Interim PIM CoE Manager Dr. Willy Kagarura (L) unveils some of the procured equipment at the PIM CoE as Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali (R) witnesses.
Interim PIM CoE Manager Dr. Willy Kagarura (L) unveils some of the procured equipment at the PIM CoE as Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali (R) witnesses.

Launching the equipment, Prof. Eria Hisali appreciated the support received from the World Bank, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and Uganda’s Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development. He emphasized that this should not be looked at as the end but rather, an ongoing process of strengthening the collaborations for the mutual benefit of all the participating institutions.

Dr. Hisali reported that the university has made progress in terms of inputs into this exercise of establishing the Centre of Excellence and had started taking huge steps away from looking at inputs to focusing on certain outputs and outcomes.

In terms of outputs, the Principal said, there were ongoing studies and efforts to integrate PIM into the curriculum of the university, initiate a new master’s program in investment and economic modelling as well as the training and capacity building that has been undertaken both for staff and officials from other areas of government.

L-R: Dr. Willy Kagarura, Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali and the PI-Prof. Edward Bbaale tour the PIM CoE office space.
L-R: Dr. Willy Kagarura, Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali and the PI-Prof. Edward Bbaale tour the PIM CoE office space.

The Principal said, the Makerere has all it takes in terms of staff capacity to undertake studies and was now focused on making the PIM CoE more vibrant and planning for its sustainability.

“The challenge we want to focus on now is to go beyond the outputs we have and even ones that we have conceptualized up to this point.  We need to continue to develop this as a very vibrant centre of excellence, a centre that speaks to its name, actualizes research in other areas as well as contributes to computation of certain key parameters like the shadow prices etc.

But all these issues speak to one important subject of sustainability of our centre beyond the current support being given by the bank and they are going to be a number of ways we want to look at this. In our previous engagement, we started discussions with the bank on the possibility of additional support but we will also be looking at other avenues of ensuring that the activities of the centre continue”, Dr. Hisali explained.

Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali (C), Prof. Edward Bbaale (2nd L), Dr. Willy Kagarura (R) and other officials inspect some of the procured furniture.
Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali (C), Prof. Edward Bbaale (2nd L), Dr. Willy Kagarura (R) and other officials inspect some of the procured furniture.

He said the university has resources from the Government of Uganda through the Research and Innovations Fund (Mak-RIF) and a college scheme to support small studies that the centre can benefit from.

The Principal Investigator PIM CoE Prof. Edward Bbaale who is also Dean School of Economics described the day’s event as remarkable in the history of the school as well as the PIM CoE and extended gratitude to the World Bank, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and the Government of Uganda for the support.

Prof. Bbaale said the World Bank and FCDO extended a grant of USD 810,000 to establish the centre of excellence as a response to the fact that so much of public investments were going to waste.

He reported that for every dollar that was being invested, only 38 cents or less was realized meaning 60% was lost. As a result, Prof. Bbaale said many strategies were designed to make sure that when government invests, public resources will gain the maximum out of a very dollar invested.

The PI, Prof. Edward Bbaale (L) speaks during the unveiling of procured equipment.
The PI, Prof. Edward Bbaale (L) speaks during the unveiling of procured equipment.

One of the interventions according to the PI was to build capacity on a sustainable basis in a premier institution like Makerere University thus the establishment of the PIM CoE to undertake training in public investment management.

Prof. Bbaale explained that public investment management goes beyond financial analysis of projects to the complex economic analysis of projects.

The Professor said, the computations that are involved in the economic analysis of projects are not only very complicated but also lacking, due to limited capacity in government and universities.

He added that the ongoing intervention is to make sure that this work can be done not only by staff but also graduate students equipped with the required knowledge.

The PI, Prof. Edward Bbaale (L) said the PIM CoE would build capacity on a sustainable basis.
The PI, Prof. Edward Bbaale (L) said the PIM CoE would build capacity on a sustainable basis.

He said the World Bank and FCDO grant has been used for training staff and other stakeholders in impact evaluation methodologies and public investment management and many are lined up including university staff capacity building training slated for November in Ghana.

“What we have done today is one of those things the grant has enabled us to fulfill. We have acquired one of the newest video conferencing facilities at Makerere University that will go a long way in facilitating online learning, online conferencing and online research which is open to be used by the university community.

The World Bank in collaboration with the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office has also facilitated us to buy laptops and computers and we have been able to furnish an office with an interim manager. We have a conference table and chairs for training participants and Wi-Fi-enabled projectors which do not need to physically connect to the laptop, but can pick the information on the laptop and project” Prof. Bbaale reported.

The Interim Manager PIM CoE Dr. Willy Rwamparagi Kagarura said, the project aim is to establish a centre of excellence as a training facility that can contribute towards strengthening public investment management in the country. 

An IT personel walks participants through some of the interactive smart board's features using an iPad.
An IT personel walks participants through some of the interactive smart board’s features using an iPad.

“Out of the USD 810,000, around USD 626,000 (77.3%) has been disbursed. Strategically, this was to sustainably build Capacity in PIM by addressing three areas namely training, research and advising government all aimed at improving returns on public investments.

We targeted to a PIM Centre of Excellence with a pool of experts both physically and structurally. We want to build capacity at the CoE and School of Economics. We are developing Curriculum and training materials to make this a reality.  We are to train technical staff at the Ministries, Departments and Agencies  and Local Governments, then we have an outreach program where we are doing research and studies after which mainstream PIM into University Economics Curriculum”, Dr. Kagarura said.

Besides the acquisition of the IT equipment and furniture, Dr. Kagarura said the centre has moved fast and trained 37 members comprising  staff, students and government officials in impact evaluation methodologies, and drafted the Strategic Plan ready for validation and final print.

PIM CoE Interim Manager Dr. Willy Kagarura presents the project achievements.
PIM CoE Interim Manager Dr. Willy Kagarura presents the project achievements.

Using local curriculum, Dr. Kagarura reported that the centre has trained 45 MDA staff in the first process of a project cycle on how to develop a concept, profile and how to put it in the Integrated Bank of Projects.

The centre according to manager has also trained 10 lecturers to increase capacity for long-term PIM training, drafted the curriculum in Masters of Economic Investment and Modelling submitted to University Senate for approval and onward submission to NCHE.

Dr. Kagarura further said the centre conducted two impact evaluations on Luweero Rural Development Program and on how the improved stoves affect the welfare of people while that final draft of the study on impact of Covid-19 on public investments was awaiting final comments before validation.

As a matter of preparation, Kagarura said 3 members are scheduled to attend training in Mbale in the Financial Analysis Module of PIAR (Economic Analysis due 10th – 23rd October) while at the beginning (8th Nov – 3rd Dec 2021)  4 core staff will be attending a  Training of Trainers  in Ghana.

Part of the procured furniture in PIM CoE Conference Room, CTF2, Makerere University.
Part of the procured furniture in PIM CoE Conference Room, CTF2, Makerere University.

The interim manager hailed the World Bank and FCDO for the funding saying, the startup grant has created a capacity building asset for the country which should be nursed to maturity.

Kagarura however noted that in order to nurture a sustainable capacity building framework or institutional arrangement for the country and the region,there is need for increased capacity among trainers through TOTs whose outputs will be in the areas of capacity building, research and outreach and Advisory Services.

The other need he said, is to lift capacity at the centre to professional levels both in project management professional and impact evaluation so as to completely cover the project cycle.

The centre he also said needs support and to be fully popularized and to work with government so that its collection of tuition from participants is appreciated.

Jane Anyango is the Principal Communication Officer, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES)

Business & Management

MBA Shortlist for Graduate Admission Test (GAT) 2022/2023

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An aerial photo of L-R: The Main Library, Central Teaching Facility 2 (CTF2), School of Economics and School of Business (CoBAMS), Makerere University, Kampala Uganda.

The Academic Registrar, Makerere University, invites all shortlisted candidates who applied for the Master of Business Administration (MBA) programme offered at Makerere University Main Campus; College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS) for academic year 2022/2023 for a Graduate Admission Test (GAT).

The test is scheduled to take place on Saturday 27th August, 2022 starting 9:00 AM at CoBAMS.

Further information can be accessed by following the link:

Shortlist for Graduate Admission Test (GAT) 2022/2023

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Hon. Baryomunsi Launches Book with Pledge to continue Supporting Research

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Hon. Chris Baryomunsi signs a dummy of the Book "Academics, Research and Leadership in Institutions of Higher Learning: Experiences from Makerere University" signifying its launch on 29th July 2022.

The Minister for ICT and National Guidance, the Hon. Chris Baryomunsi today July 29, 2022, launched a book authored by 20 researchers of Makerere University.

The book titled “Academics, Research and Leadership in Institutions of Higher Learning: Experiences from Makerere University” details the research and training experiences of some academic units in Makerere University. The programs analyzed in the book include training of statisticians, population scientists, quantitative economists among others. The book documents past, present and emerging issues in training and research in the above fields. The book, according to Prof. Ben Kiregyera who gave the keynote address, makes the case for strengthening the infrastructure for training and research including technical and administrative leadership. The book also looks at the acquisition of new knowledge, strategic skills and competences in different disciplines to meet the 21st century development and data challenges.

Hon. Chris Baryomunsi challenged researchers to engage in new research areas such as robotics, nano-technology, big data, Internet of Things and integrate them in our day to day lives.
Hon. Chris Baryomunsi challenged researchers to engage in new research areas such as robotics, nano-technology, big data, Internet of Things and integrate them in our day to day lives.

Hon. Chris Baryomunsi, also a former lecturer in the department of population studies said the government would continue to support research and innovation because they drive development of the economy. “What we need to do better is engage policy makers in our research processes,” Dr. Baryomunsi advised. “Your research needs to inform government but you also have a role of simplifying statistics to the public”. He challenged researchers to engage in new research areas such as robotics, nano-technology, big data, Internet of Things and integrate them in our day to day lives.

Prof. Henry Alinaitwe, the Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Finance and Administration, who represented the Vice Chancellor, applauded the authors of the book, saying they are greatly contributing to the research agenda of the university. He said the book will go a long way in informing decision making in the university, as the university moves into becoming a research led university.

Prof. Henry Alinaitwe delivers the remarks on behalf of the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe.
Prof. Henry Alinaitwe delivers the remarks on behalf of the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe.

The Principal of the College of Business and Management Science, Prof. Eria Hisali, who was represented by the Deputy Principal Prof. Bruno Yawe, congratulated the authors and editorsfor a job well done. “This is yet another reminder that a lot can be achieved when we are determined and when we choose to work closely together,” the Principal said.

The Principal told the authors, most of whom were drawn from CoBAMS that the college will be launching a special purpose vehicle for policy engagements called the Policy Labs. This will bring together policy makers, implementers, private sector actors, development partners and the academia to engage on topical policy issues. It will enable researchers to share the recommendations with a wider audience of policy makers and implementers.

Prof. Buyinza Mukadasi (2nd L), Prof. Eria Hisali (R) and other officials at the Book Launch.
Prof. Buyinza Mukadasi (2nd L), Prof. Eria Hisali (R) and other officials at the Book Launch.

The Director of Research and Graduate Training, Prof. Buyinza Mukadasi also congratulated the authors and reemphasized the university’s commitment to supporting research geared at finding home grown solutions to society challenges.

The coordinators of the book project, Prof. Abel Nzabona, shared with the audience the 5-year journey of writing the book.

The journey started in June 2018 when Prof. Ronald Wesonga (in the company of Dr. Fred Maniragaba) mentioned that he had a book idea and wanted Prof. Nzabona to coordinate the writing process. Prof Ronald Wesonga’s idea of the book was an academic document that was researched, evidence-based, informative, marketable and interesting to read. The team then set out on a journey or writing, vetting, peer-reviewing and manuscript writing, identifying editors and publishers. 

Part of the audience at the Book Launch.
Part of the audience at the Book Launch.

“We started off with just 4 chapters but never gave up. We intensified the popularization of the book idea and eventually reached the 15-chapter mark,” Prof. Nzabona said. The team was delighted to have been joined by colleagues from the College of Education and External Studies namely Dr David Onen and Prof. Fred Bakkabulindi.

The vision bearer and funder of the publication, Prof. Ronald Wesonga, in his remarks highlighted the objectives of the book which included:

  1. To Share evidence-based, data-driven experiences pertaining academics and research leadership at Makerere University.
  2. To Infer how leadership shapes academics and research outputs at universities
  3. To Provide viable recommendations based on findings from different studies
  4. To Contribute to the Mak@100 celebrations

The book Prof. Wesonga shared addresses the following research questions:

  1. What is the effect of leadership on excellence in academics? Addressed in seven chapters: {4,5,6,7,9,10,12}
  2. What is the effect of leadership on research outputs? Addressed in six chapters: {2,3,8,11,13,14}
One of the Book Authors, Dr. Anthony Tibaingana.
One of the Book Authors, Dr. Anthony Tibaingana.

The book employed the following methodology:

  1. Teamwork and networking
  2. Primary and secondary data sources
  3. Literature Search
  4. Mixed Methods
  5. Descriptive and Inferential Approaches
  6. Quality Standardization and Flow (Abstract, KW, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, Conclusion & Recommendations)

According to Prof. Wesonga, the book’s unique attributes include:

  1. First ever in the history of Mak to demonstrate impeccable teamwork and network with 20 contributing authors
  2. Pioneering book in Mak history that focuses on leadership audit
  3. Proven data-driven scientific approach
  4. Baseline for various monographs, yet to come soon
  5. First book to be internationally demanded before its launch
Hon. Chris Baryomunsi (5th R) poses with officials and some of the authors at the Book Launch on 29th July 2022, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University.
Hon. Chris Baryomunsi (5th R) poses with officials and some of the authors at the Book Launch on 29th July 2022, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University.

THE AUTHORS

  1. Anthony Tibaingana
  2. Abraham Y. Owino
  3. Mwanga Yeko
  4. Fred Maniragaba
  5. Ronald Wesonga
  6. John Mushomi Atwebembeire
  7. Abel Nzabona
  8. John Paul Tugume
  9. Christian Kakuba
  10. Charles Lwanga
  11. Ishmael Kalule-Sabiti
  12. James Ntozi
  13. Edward Musoke
  14. Richard Tuyiragize
  15. Fabian Nabugoomu
  16. John Bosco Asiimwe
  17. Yeko Mwanga
  18. Paulino Ariho
  19. Fred Edward K. Bakkabulindi
  20. David Onen

EDITORS:

  1. Fredrick Ruguma Tumwine
  2. Fred E. K. Bakkabulindi
  3. James Ntozi

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Business & Management

Makerere signs MoU with ACCA: CoBAMS students to get exam exemption

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The Principal CoBAMS, Prof. Eria Hisali (C) and ACCA Uganda Country Manager, Ms. Charlotte Kukunda (L) exchange the signed agreement as the Dean School of Business, Prof. Godfrey Akileng (R) applauds on 18th July 2022, Makerere University.

Makerere University, yesterday signed a memorandum of understanding with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), which is set to benefit students of Bachelor of Commerce – Accounting major.

According to the Country Manager of ACCA Uganda, Charlotte Kukunda, Makerere University students, starting with the next Academic year 2023 will be exempted from 8 examination papers out of the 13 papers one is supposed to take before being certified as a professional accountant.

This means that of Bachelor of Commerce – Accounting students will be sitting for only 5 out of 13 examinations to attain full ACCA qualifications.

The accreditation is for five years effective 2023 to 2027.

This comes with a reduction in the years a student is scheduled to spend studying ACCA as well as reducing the money one is supposed to spend on the eight courses.

Ms. Kukunda said that it takes one about two years to complete the ACCA course if one is to do all the 13 courses. However, with the exception of the 8 examinations, one can finish the course in one year.

The team from ACCA joins Management and staff of CoBAMS for a group photo.
The team from ACCA joins Management and staff of CoBAMS for a group photo.

During the signing ceremony, the Principal of the College of Business and Management Sciences, Prof. Eria Hisali, who represented the Vice Chancellor said the exemptions are a stamp of quality of the curriculum and education that the school of Business offers. He said the college was dedicated to conducting quality assurance for her courses, service delivery and research. “We want to get to the level where all our flagship programs are internationally accredited,” Prof. Hisali said.  

The Dean School of Business, Prof. Godfrey Akileng, said before the accredidation was done, ACCA conducted an audit of the curriculum and examinations of the Bachelor of Commerce – Accounting course.

“This decision means that ACCA highly regards the quality of the curriculum, training and examination of Bachelor of Commerce and that students of Bachelor of Commerce-Accounting option will attempt only 5 examination papers to attain a full ACCA qualification,” Prof. Akileng said.

 This is because, in some course units, what the students will have studied and accomplished within their three years of Bachelor’s training will be similar to some of the post-business school content they ordinarily should have encountered as part of their ACCA training.

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