Private Higher Education in Ethiopia: Peril and Promise


  • Tesfaye Semela Associate Professor, Faculty of Education


As globalization gets its foothold in Africa, the people have started to feel its effects they are grapping with the new challenges coming along with it. The impacts are also gradually beginning to be felt as globalization begins to engulf the higher education sector. Willingly or otherwise, Africa seems to have come to terms with the fact that the hegemony of public higher education establishments would be a history as soon as the continent’s private institutions emerge as a potent alternative. Like its counterparts in Africa, Ethiopia has not only acknowledged, but also actively responded to the changing situation as evidenced by the new reforms and policies introduced to higher education system. Informed by the new world order, Ethiopia has recently adopted a liberal policy stance that encouraged local private investment as well as foreign players though the country is not yet a party to the General Agreement on Trade and Services (GATS). The general Agreement on Trade and Services obliges member countries to open up their domestic markets to foreign institutions and companies engaged in commercialization of higher education. This short paper shades light on the status of private HE in Ethiopia in view of its promises, pitfalls, and potentials in strengthening the higher education system