Title: Transfer of high technology via continuing education: a case for South-North partnerships

Authors: Cynthia Davis, Arnold Seigel, Myron W. Chin

Addresses: University of Maryland, College of Engineering, USA. ' University of Maryland, College of Engineering, USA. ' University of Maryland, College of Engineering, USA

Abstract: The rapid advances currently being made in high technology have widened the gap between developing and developed countries around the world. High technology has been classified by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics as those industries which employ twice the number of technical personnel and spend twice as much on research and development as the average of US manufacturing. One of the main characteristics of such industries is that they employ a higher percentage of engineers, scientists and technicians than other manufacturing companies. Every effort must therefore be made to transfer such technology to the valuable human resource base of developing countries in order to increase their productivity and improve their economies. In this paper it is proposed that one effective strategy for achieving such goals is to embark on joint South-North partnership arrangements between the developing countries of the South and the developed countries of the North on a regional basis to deliver the quantity and quality of continuing engineering education (CEE) courses required utilising the most economic and practical delivery systems currently available, such as satellite video-conferences and computer-assisted learning (CAL). A pilot program between the University of the West Indies and the University of Maryland, College Park to deliver CEE courses in some of the emerging technologies is described. An attempt is made in the paper to identify those |hi-tech| fields likely to be of interest not only in the West Indies but also to other developing countries of the world. The economics of the most appropriate delivery systems and formats for such courses are also discussed. The paper concludes that such South-North partnerships on a regional basis under the aegis of the international professional engineering bodies such as IACEE, WFEO and the Commonwealth Engineers Council (CEC) could be effective transfer mechanisms whereby the developing world could make a quantum leap into the 21st century.

Keywords: technology transfer; developing countries; LDCs; University of Maryland; University of the West Indies; satellite delivery; South-North exchange; high technology; high tech; videoconferencing; computer-assisted learning; CAL; continuing engineering education; CEE; continuing education.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCEELL.1992.030401

International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 1992 Vol.2 No.2/3/4, pp.248 - 255

Available online: 15 Dec 2009 *

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