The Institut Panafricain pour le Développement - Afrique Centrale (IPD-AC) joined the Virtual Institute today, bringing the number of affiliate university members to 47. The idea of membership was first raised during a meeting with IPD-AC's director, Romuald Pial Mezala, early October.
- Vlasta Macku
Created in 1965 and based in Douala, IPD-AC's mission is to support development efforts of African countries by strengthening the capacity of relevant decision-makers and institutions in the region through education/training, research and advisory services.
The institute offers a range of programmes aimed at students and professionals wishing to acquire knowledge and pursue careers in the area of development. These include undergraduate and graduate programmes in development and regional integration, and in environment and management of natural resources, along with graduate programmes in social and solidarity economy, and management of peace and development, among others.
The main research areas of IPD-AC are participation of local communities in economic and social development, food security in Cameroon, and decentralization and local development.
The cooperation with the Vi will be coordinated by Pial Mezala, who has a background in international relations and law and whose main areas of interest include environmental law; development finance; WTO law; international economic law; international peacekeeping law; public policies analysis and effectiveness of official development assistance. He will receive support from a team of 14 colleagues whith specializations in macro- and mesoeconomics; information and communication technologies; project and risk management; social and solidarity economics; environment, climate change and sustainable development; public policies; development strategies; regional integration; effectiveness of aid for development; gender; local development; development economics; and development theories.
The institute is ready to share the findings of their research, as well as teaching resources developed for their programmes, including those in the area of e-learning, and to contribute to Virtual Institute research and international publications.
IPD-AC hopes that Vi membership will help develop new courses and joint projects with Vi members, and that it will provide access to teaching resources and publications and professional development opportunities.
For more information about IPD-AC, visit the university profile on the Vi website.