With financial support from the government of Finland, the Virtual Institute organized its first fellowships for future assistant lecturers from the University of Dar-es-Salaam (UDES), during a month from the 28th April to the 26th May.
The five staff members from the UDES who participated in the fellowship programme, are currently finishing their Masters in International Trade Policy. They are expected to be involved in teaching on the Masters programme in future. The fellowships therefore provide a valuable training opportunity for building the capacity of the UDES and to the sustainability of its Masters programme in International Trade Policy, developed by Vi member coordinator, Professor Francis Matambalya.
During their stay at UNCTAD, each of the fellows conducted an assignment on a specific topic that is relevant for his/her future work. They were supported, in this task, by mentors from the Division on Globalisation and Development Strategies and the Division on International Trade in Goods and Services and Commodities.
At the end of the fellowships, the Vi organized an informal meeting with the mentors, other interested UNCTAD staff, a representative from the Tanzanian mission and Professor Francis Matamblya, in which the fellows were given an opportunity to present their papers and take questions from the audience. The comments and feedback they received allowed them to successfully finalise their assignment.
It is hoped that the fellowship programme can be repeated next year and extended to allow more time for research, and training on research methodologies.