ZEF plays leading role in DAAD-initiated Centre of Excellence in Ghana: First students starting in Program for Development Studies

January 27, 2009.  

Accra, January 19 2009. The first batch of students started doctoral courses in the Program for Development Studies of the new Ghanaian-German Centre for Development Studies and Health Research in Accra, Ghana. The Program for Development Studies was set up jointly by ZEF and the Institute for Statistical and Economic Research (ISSER) at the University of Ghana, Legon. The Centres of Excellence in Development Studies in Africa were initiated in 2008 by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), which selected seven proposals out of 70 applications for further funding. The Program for Development Studies will be funded for a five year period with a total sum of 1.5 million euro.


Main goals

The program offers a three year doctoral course in development studies. In addition, it provides expertise and funds to raise staff capacities and enhance the scientific infrastructure (library and computer lab) at the Ghanaian partner institute ISSER. The program aims at developing academic networks between the partner institutes as well as with other international partners. Another objective is to design collaborative research projects that will broaden the scope of activities and therewith guarantee the future sustainability of the program.


Doctoral courses program

The doctoral program offers a mix of theoretical and methodological education, professional training, and German language classes. Lectures are held by short-term senior staff from ZEF and scientists of the University of Ghana. A research visit to Germany is also part of the program, where students will be intensively tutored and supported by researchers from ZEF and other German institutions while refining their research proposals.


During the first year, three PhD-students are participating. In the following years five students, four from Ghana and one from African partner institutes, will be admitted annually. The first batch of doctoral students will focus on land use and land tenure, as these are important development-related issues in Ghana and other parts of Africa. Conducting extended field research of up to 12 months is part of the three year doctoral program.

The lectures of the doctoral course program are also open to Master phil. students from ISSER and doctoral students of the Program for Health Research, the counterpart program at the Ghanaian-German Centre for Development Studies and Health Research.



Wolfram Laube

Dr. Wolfram Laube