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Creativity and exchange of ideas at the “No Future without Education”-lab in Ethiopia

Have you ever discussed the topic of education at an art museum and built with Lego-bricks in the process? 40 participants of the lab in Ethiopia joined in this unique experience with great enthusiasm and gave free run to their creativity.

What are the greatest challenges facing the achievement of inclusive and high-quality education in Ethiopia? And are there any successful examples at a local or national level that could bring hope to the Ethiopian educational sector? These were the questions which the participants of the lab “No Future without Education” explored in a critical and practise-oriented fashion on 5 October 2017 in Addis Ababa. The participants – who were chiefly Germany-Alumni – are involved, both in their work and their free time, in supporting inclusive and high-quality education in Ethiopia. 

The lab provided them with a platform to exchange ideas, share their experiences with the topic of education, especially with regards to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Goal 4 “Quality Education”, and develop new ideas and solutions together.

After a welcome by Mr Wendt, Cultural Attaché at the German Embassy in Addis Ababa, who highlighted the important role of alumni networks in the context of the event, three high-ranking experts outlined the situation of the Ethiopian educational sector. Dr Abebaw Yirga, Director of the Ethiopian Institute of Higher Education at the University of Addis Ababa, spoke about current positive developments regarding access to higher education, but also mentioned the sector’s various challenges, like the quality of teacher training and insufficient infrastructure. Similar challenges were described by Mr Andualem Zewdie, Vice Director of the Addis Ababa TVET Bureau for Vocational Education. Dr Solomon Mogus, Director of the Education Strategy Center presented a new comprehensive national strategy for qualification. The input contributed by the speakers sparked a lively and sophisticated debate among the alumni. This first exchange gave an impulse for interesting and interactive discussions during the course of the day. In working groups which applied innovative workshop methods like Lego Serious Play, Journaling or the “Title, Tweet, Concrete”-method, participants developed statements on Goal 4: “High-quality education for all can only be achieved in Ethiopia if…”

  • Access to education means high-quality education,
  • The education system becomes more inclusive,
  • Education is a priority for everyone,
  • Everyone is committed to achieving the motto “Education for Everyone”,
  • Formal education is supported by informal education,
  • We approach the challenges with a focus on solutions,
  • Our society’s attitude towards reading and writing is changed,
  • A focus is placed on adult education.

One of the highlights of the lab was the presentation of specific project ideas or already implemented projects in the form of elevator pitches, which gave a useful insight into the great variety of how Germany-Alumni are getting involved in the field of education. Four projects were selected for deeper study and further development by all participants in the form of a World Café.  At the end of the day, participant and project owner Etsegenet Berhanu Ayano summed up her impressions: “I benefited a great deal from the ‘No Future without Education’-lab and was able to collect many relevant suggestions to be considered in the implementation of the project. I also made new contacts that will be useful for the project.” Other participants, who continued to network at the following “Get-Together”, made similar remarks.

Contact: lab-ethiopia(at)alumniportal-deutschland.org

The experts‘ presentations can be downloaded here: The role of the Qualifications Framework in enhancing quality Higher Education; Overview of Higher Education in Ethiopia; TVET in Ethiopia
You can find the complete lab report here.

Impressions from the Lab:

  • Education for all

    Education for all

  • Lap participants

    Lab participants

  • Movement


  • Mr Berhanu from the Association of Ethiopians Educated in Germany (AEEG)

    Mr Berhanu from the Association of Ethiopians Educated in Germany (AEEG)

  • Mr. Wendt, Cultural Attaché, German Embassy

    Mr. Wendt, Cultural Attaché, German Embassy

  • Networking


  • Panellists


  • Lap participant

    Lab participant

  • Project presenter

    Project presenter

  • Working group with Lego Serious Play

    Working group with Lego Serious Play

  • Working group in museum

    Working group in museum

Project Ideas

The lab provided an opportunity to submit, present and discuss own innovative project ideas and solution approaches. Selected project ideas can now be found below - please get in touch with the contact persons mentioned on the specific pages if you would like to support the projects or if you have any questions!


Hélène Pestel
19 September 2017

Dear Richard,

thank you very much for your comment and your thoughts on education!

If you wish to take part in the lab "No Future Without Education" on October 5th in Addis Abeba and discuss the topic with other stakeholders and experts from the field of education, please submit your application via our online form: https://www.alumniportal-deutschland.org/web-poll/index.php/287978/lang-en

Please note that tomorrow is the deadline to apply!


Richard Oppong
13 September 2017

Education is a very vital tool that is used in the contemporary world to succeed.

It is important because it is used to mitigate most of the challenges faced in life.

The knowledge that is attained through education helps open doors to a lot of opportunities for better prospects in career growth.

In order to attain the right grade in your education, there are certain things you must do through the learning process.

There are the practical aspects and the theoretical aspects of education

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