Training needs among professionals engaged in social protection in Africa are enormous. And as efforts to expand social protection intensify at the national, regional and global levels, the need for well-trained social protection professionals and researchers is expected to increase over the coming years.
There is an urgent need to strengthen the technical capacity of today’s social protection institutions staff - especially in regard to actuarial practices, legislation, and approaches to the extension of social protection to the informal sector. It is also important to train today the next generation of social protection administrators and policy analysts. This is crucial to make countries less dependent on foreign consultants and researchers for designing, implementing and evaluating their social policy initiatives.
The IRC is working with others - the University of Mauritius, the ILO, and any other partner willing to support such initiatives - to provide technical support to social protection capacity-building initiatives throughout Africa, and offer (primarily in English and French): short professional courses to respond to immediate training needs; executive master programmes to train the next generation of social protection administrators and policy analysts; and research grants, along with academic supervision, to train new researchers and develop the research capacity of African institutions in social protection-related issues. These investments are necessary to safeguard the local ownership and sustainability of social protection programmes and interventions in Africa.