Intercultural collaboration in academia thanks to a Diaspora Fellowship Program
Who leads this initiative of intercultural dialogue?
The Institute of International Education (IIE), founded in 1919 (USA) manages a wide offer of intercultural collaboration programs across institutions of higher education, with a worldwide reach. The Institute also dedicates specific efforts to assist scholars, students and artists threatened by conflict and unrest in their home countries.
What is this initiative about ?
The Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Program facilitates engagement between scholars born in Africa who are now based in the United States or Canada and scholars in Africa on mutually beneficial academic activities. Managed by IIE, in collaboration with the United States International University-Africa in Nairobi, higher education institutions based in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda are involved in this program. A total of 390 African Diaspora Fellowships have been awarded for scholars to travel to Africa since the program’s inception in 2013.
How is this initiative a good practice of intercultural dialogue? What challenge(s) does it tackle ? What is at stake?
Each person’s vision and references are based on a variety of elements, including their cultural background (systems of value, spiritual beliefs, traditions, etc.). The participants of the program (the fellow and the host) may have cultural references in common, but as they have evolved in different environments, working together gives a unique opportunity to shape new ideas and recommendations, with the exchange of perspectives and skills at the heart of the entire process.