H.E. Ishwor Pokhrel, the Acting Prime Minister of the Federal Republic of Nepal, is the chief guest in the International Conference on Innovations in TVET for Socio-Economic Development held from October 4-5, 2018 at the Hotel Yak and Yeti in Kathmandu.
The two-day, high-profile event brought a total of 500 stakeholders of TVET such as policy makers, international organizations and institutions, administrators, educators, industry representatives, experts, advocates, professionals and enthusiasts on a common platform to discuss and exchange viewpoints on trends and innovations in TVET to effect transformation of the countries’ economies and societies. In addition, the participants of the Regional Program on Role of TVET in Socio-Economic Transformation, which was also held before with the conference, was also complete in attendance.
H.E. Pokhrel was invited along with some high officials of the Nepalese education sector namely Mr. Giriraj Mani Pokhrel, the Hon’ble Minister of Education, Science and Technology, Dr. Kul Bahadur Basnet, Vice Chairman of the Council for Technical Education and Vocational Training (CTEVT), Nepal, and high officials from the organizers: Colombo Plan Staff College (CPSC), Diploma Engineers Association of Nepal (DEAN) and CTEVT.
Mr. Pradeep Gyawali, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Nepal (center) receiving recognition from Dr. Kameshwar Prasad Singh, the President of DEAN (center left) and Dr. Ramhari Lamichhane, Director General of CPSC (center right)
The conference aimed to provide a platform for discussions and sharing of innovations, best practices, initiatives and successful models in TVET targeted to create contributions in the socio-economic development of the countries in the region. They also expected to establish links for national, regional, and international TVET initiatives that will further enhance quality assurance through accreditation; as well as to set a venue for establishing, and strengthening industry-institute linkages, networks and partnerships. They also shared awareness and deeper understanding on global trends and initiatives for TVET competitiveness. At the end of the conference, they were able to contribute to the conference by coming up with plans and policy views relevant to the learnings gained from the conference.
The program participant, speakers and guests during the 2-day International Conference
Key speakers of the conference include some of the esteemed experts in the field of TVET and innovations. These are composed of the following persons:
- Dr. Ramhari Lamichhane, Director General of the Colombo Plan Staff College (CPSC), Philippines.
- Dr. Dinesh Chandra Devkota, Former Vice Chairperson, National Planning Commission, Government of Nepal.
- Dr. Sungsup Ra, Director-South Asia Regional Department, Asian Development Bank, Philippines.
- Prof. Dr. Noraini Binti Kaprawi, Director of the International Office, Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia (UTHM), Malaysia.
- Dr. Paiboon Saiyawongs, Asia Pacific Accreditation and Certification Commission (APACC) Special Officer for Thailand and APACC Advisor to the Office of the Vocational Education Commission (OVEC), Thailand.
- Prof. Angelica M. Baylon, Director for External Relations, Maritime Academy of Asia and the Pacific (MAAP), Philippines.
- Dr. Steven McKee, President, Labtech International Ltd., Indonesia.
- Prof. Chandler Huang, Vice President, Zhejiang Technical Institute of Economics (ZJTIE), Hangzhou, China.
- Engr. A.K.M.A. Hamid, President, Institution of Diploma Engineers, Bangladesh (IDEB).
Towards the end of the event, a common agreement entitled the “Kathmandu Declaration for Sustainable and Quality TVET” was adopted. The declaration “echoed the need for immediate and tangible action from policymakers, educators, technologists, professionals, TVET practitioners and Technical Training Providers (TTPs) to strengthen and promote the role of Technical Education and Training and Vocational Training (TVET) in contributing to the advancement of the socio-economic status of their respective countries, regions and the world as a whole”. This was adopted unanimously by the program participants and was endorsed to the Government of Nepal for further action.
KATHMANDU DECLARATION 2018
- The TVET Policy and Strategic Direction of government is identified as a key element to drive TVET towards sustainable development. Therefore, every government must have concrete laws and policy to develop National Vocational Qualification Frameworks (NVQF) and push towards the accreditation of programs and institutions offering TVET programs, in addition to the standardization of TVET programs to harmonize their practices with globally-accepted standards.
- The competency of technical teachers is the basic requirement to ensure the quality in TVET. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop the intellectual capacity of technical teachers, enhance the skills of the existing pool, introduce industrial experience, and implement the technical teacher’s competency assessment system.
- The Quality Management System (QMS) is a necessary element to ensure the success of the outcome-based TVET system. Therefore, it is essential to continually identify the institutions that will serve as models and benchmarks for performance through systems such as the Asia Pacific Accreditation and Certification (APACC) and the internal accreditation systems of the own country.
- For effective coordination, minimization of resource duplication and productive exchange of best practices, countries should promote professional linkages among the government ministries, development partners, TVET authorities, professional organizations, and private sectors. Promotion of national and regional level policy dialogues through the organization of forums and networking opportunities can be explored.
- To ensure the high quality of service provided by TVET professionals, an effective regulation of the TVET practice should be in place. Countries should be able to recognize and promote the role of relevant professional councils to achieve this plan.
- Public Private Partnership (PPP) has been acknowledged as one of the effective models to implement the TVET programs as per the need and policy of the country. Therefore, it should be strengthened by encouraging the practical and effective participation of the private sector in TVET activities such as policy formulation, sector skill council formation, curriculum development, apprenticeship and TVET program implementation and post- program support such as the employment placement of graduates. In addition, the capacity enhancement of Technical Training Providers (TTPs) in the region is also recognized as urgent.
- Professional organizations such as Diploma Engineers Association Nepal (DEAN), TVET Providers Association and other similar professional bodies have a potential in bridging the gap between institute and industries. Therefore, the government has to consider them as a key players in providing a clear career path to TVET graduates and in turn enhance their chances of being employed.
- A Human Resource Development Plan with projection of supply and demand of skills and TVET graduates, which is in-line with the Development Plan of each government of the Region is critically important in promoting social inclusion.
- The Integrated TEVT Act is deemed to be urgent especially in Nepal, considering the changed political context.
- In order to address the challenges of Industrial Revolution (IR) 4.0, a promotion of creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship through quality TVET is essential and should be based on continuous research and development. These values are also equally important in facilitating the rapid socio-economic development of developing countries such as Nepal.
- There must be an urgent need to adopt a strategic mindset in developing TVET programs that will provide lasting solutions to problems such as a mismatch in the supply of jobs to the demand for skilled workforce.
- The Colombo Plan Staff College (CPSC) is expected to be a conduit in assisting its member countries in the formulation of strategies and support mechanisms in support of the capacity enhancement of TVET stakeholders, particularly in the quality Improvement of the trainers and instructors. Thus, Institutions affiliated with CPSC are encouraged and expected to contribute in enhancing the capacity of training providers through the organization’s assistance or through bilateral agreements with other institutions.