Open and Distance Learning (ODL) as a Strategic Tool for Improving Employability and Entrepreneurship in New Frontier Markets: The Case of Uganda
In light of efforts to make higher education (HE) more accessible in African countries, Open and Distance Learning (ODL) has emerged as one of the most promising solutions. A key area of application is duo-mode HE delivery which is designed to overcome the deficiencies of traditional single-mode, campus-based delivery. Successful application has however been generally limited by, among others, inadequate foundational infrastructure, weak demonstration of equivalency with traditional qualifications and low supporting research. Trends in Foreign Direct Investment inflows and growing participation in the global economy by African countries further necessitate ODL that offers the international qualifications increasingly sought by employers. // The current study is based on the following research question: How can ODL be more effectively integrated into HE programs of duo-mode delivery to improve employability and entrepreneurship in African new frontier markets? It relies on an inductive, qualitative case study that feeds on evidence from focus group discussions and semi-structured interviews with relevant senior staff at the case HE institution in Uganda. The findings indicate a need for a stronger linkage between duo-mode delivery and direct employability and entrepreneurship using dynamic capabilities. Prominent among such capabilities are adaptive resilience, choice of foundational courses, engagement with international partnerships and anticipation of future changes. We extend organisational capabilities theory, especially from a dynamic capabilities perspective. // Paper ID 187
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