USAID Announces New University Engagement Partnership Program

For Immediate Release

Thursday, February 9, 2012
USAID Press Office
202-712-4320

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Yesterday, at a White House innovation event, and echoing President Barack Obama's commitment and vision for a greater focus on development through innovation, science and technology, Dr. Rajiv Shah, Administrator for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), announced the final Higher Education Solutions Network Request for Applications (RFA) to build new opportunities through partnerships with universities and colleges. This final RFA was a result of internal and external consultations, including two pre-solicitation workshops that were held in January.

"With the official launch of the RFA, we are pioneering a new relationship between USAID and universities that will help harness the creativity and experimentation that thrives on college campuses to help solve development challenges," said Shah. "Through these new relationships, we will reach students who not only want to learn about global development, but are designing innovative solutions."

The RFA is a five-year program that will focus the next generation of problem solvers on development's most vexing challenges, and harness the energy and idealism that exists in universities across America and the developing world. These partnerships with universities will support multidisciplinary, evidence-based approaches to development, encourage innovation and solutions analysis, and leverage US taxpayer dollars to improve the efficacy of our development interventions.

Awards are available at two levels: either Single Institution Center or as a Consortium Center, which would consist of three to four academic centers and can include developing country partners.

Shah's announcement at the White House was part of a program that featured work implemented by the United States Government that showcases the expansion of scientific and innovative collaboration with other nations and the investment in science, technology, and innovation to approach solving development challenges in a new and collaborative way.

More information regarding this effort and the RFA can be found at www.usaid.gov/universities.

Last updated: May 17, 2012

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