A case study of the development of science, technology and innovation policy at the higher education level in Ghana

Karikari-Ababio, Matthew (2013) A case study of the development of science, technology and innovation policy at the higher education level in Ghana. Doctoral thesis (EdD), University of Sussex.

PDF - Published Version
Download (1MB) | Preview


It has been nearly fifty-four years since Ghana nursed the dream of rapid social and economic development through science, technology and innovation. Ghana is yet to experience technological transformation to the level of other countries with which she was at par at the time of her independence. Gaps in understanding still remain in the Ghanaian experience in the development of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) policy. As such, a radical reform of the systems to help in the restructuring and transforming the economy is still lacking. In 2010 the government of Ghana developed an STI policy. The aim of this policy is to address all sectors of the economy in order to achieve growth and economic transformation.

Analytically, the thesis takes a critical perspective to situate Ghana’s socio-economic and political history in the discourses of the dependency theory framework and to examine how the STI policy at the higher education level in Ghana was formulated and how this had privileged different interests and what the implications are for the country.

Mindful of the gaps and historic policy flows, the study took advantage of the researcher’s insider position as an education expert and experience as the government policy developer. With this position and experience, the researcher orientation from the perspectives of policy-makers in Ghana was qualitative research methodology that focused on a case study approach, documentary analysis linked to a critical discourse analysis, observations, semi-structured and informal interviews and the use of a research diary to collect field data. The field data collected for the empirical analysis were documentary data, interview transcripts, interview notes, observation data and field notes. In a constructivist analysis, the interpretive paradigm approach, the notion of triangulation and reflexivity helped not only to privilege the multiple perspectives but to also illuminate the complexity and differences among the participants and other data sources to improve the quality of the data analysis.

The research found that in Ghana’s trajectory to modernity through education, the country was marginalised in technology by the advanced capitalist nations to produce low-skilled personnel to be exploited by corporations. Further, the government subcontracted the World Bank and UNCTAD to produce the 2010 STI policy to the neglect of its established institutions. This makes it difficult for the country to pursue an independent reflationary STI policy. Moreover, the documentary analysis of the policy revealed that the government of Ghana had focused mostly on basic education to the detriment of higher education and STI policy to further marginalise the country in technology to produce a low-skilled Ghana to be exploited by corporations. The implication is Ghana to restructure the content of education to build a solid foundation for the development of the STI policy in the country.

The study, therefore, provides a solid critique of the country’s economic policy and international commitments that perpetuate a dependent model of development to the neglect of STI policy in Ghana. In the wake of the new STI policy development paradigms, the study suggests the need for a shift in paradigm from poor interactive learning space to rich interactive learning space, an interactionist model approach underpinned by a rich interactive learning space as an analytical tool and a guide for STI policy formation in Ghana.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Education and Social Work > Education
Subjects: L Education > LG Individual institutions (Asia. Africa. Oceania) > LG401 Africa > LG480 West Africa > LG497 Ghana
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 31 Mar 2014 09:28
Last Modified: 17 Sep 2015 12:23
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/46988

View download statistics for this item

📧 Request an update