«DOCUMENT RESUME CE 072 687 ED 400 391 Kent, David W.; Mushi, Paul S. D. AUTHOR The Education and Training of Artisans for the TITLE Informal Sector ...»
CE 072 687
ED 400 391
Kent, David W.; Mushi, Paul S. D.
The Education and Training of Artisans for the
Informal Sector in Tanzania. Education Research.
Serial No. 18.
Overseas Development Administration, London
PUB DATENOTE 155p.
Research/Technical (143) Reports
PUB TYPEMF01/PC07 Plus Postage.
EDRS PRICEAdult Education; *Craft Workers; Developing Nations;
DESCRIPTORSEconomic Development; *Entrepreneurship; Females;
Foreign Countries; Handicrafts; *Job Training;
Postsecondary Education; Secondary Education; *Small Businesses; *Trade and Industrial Education *Tanzania
This is one of a series of Education Papers issued from time to time by the Education Division of the Overseas Development Administration. Each paper represents a study or piece of commissioned research on some aspect of education and training in developing countries. Most of the studies were undertaken in order to provide informed judgements from which policy decisions could be drawn, but in each case it has become apparent that the material produced would be of interest to a wider audience, particularly but not exclusively those whose work focuses on developing countries.
Each paper is numbered serially, and further copies can be obtained through the ODA's Education Division, 94 Victoria Street, London SW1E 5JL, subject to availability. A full list appears overleaf.
Although these papers are issued by the ODA, the views expressed in them are entirely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the ODA's own policies or views.
Any discussion of their content should therefore be addressed to the authors and not to the ODA.
LIST OF OTHER ODA EDUCATION PAPERS AVAILABLE
Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in the world and since independence has been governed by a single political party. At Independence the literacy rate per se was very low and one of most immediate political objectives was to raise literacy levels among the population as part of the socio-economic development of the country and for about twenty years the education of adults and children was accorded a high priority. However, this rapid expansion of educational provision has resulted in an educational system that is severely impeded by a shortage of funds, poor facilities and physical resources. In addition, the drive towards universal primary education raised the expectations and aspirations of parents and pupils. This subsequently contributed towards the development of an elitist culture that the government was unable to stem. This culture has permeated not only the educational system, but also influenced peoples' perceptions of employment and work.
Secondary education was considered to be the key to future wage-employment in the formal sector, but for the ever increasing numbers of young people who were unable to progress to secondary education, the stark reality was that they were forced to choose between agriculture, or employment/self-employment in the informal sector. A problem exacerbated by a rising birth rate, improved health care and continued economic decline that has resulted in increasing levels of unemployment and underemployment of young people.
Over the last 30 years there has been growing international interest in what is called the `informal sector' as a mechanism of employment and income generation in developing countries. However, the government of Tanzania did not recognise, or acknowledge the economic value of the informal sector principally for ideological reasons, until the economic decline forced the government to reappraise their perceptions and policies towards local, indigenous technologies and enterprises. Enterprises, that were once despised and discriminated against are now actively supported and promoted, for they are increasingly being considered to be the principal mechanism for economic survival for ever greater numbers of people.
To operate successfully as artisans in the informal sector young people require a range of knowledge and skills. This study considered the needs of young people and sought the views of primary school pupils, street youth and informal sector employers, as well as policy makers, administrators, Principals and Headteachers. In the course of the study, the types of education and training provision was mapped and evaluated through visits to a number of registered vocational training centres that formally prepared trainees for formal sector employment and also centres that are specifically training youth for the informal sector. In addition, the training provided by a number of informal sector operators was studied.
This research provides a composite picture of the factors which influence education and training in the context of the informal sector. The report will be of particular interest to educational policy makers, administrators and academics involved in the provision of education and training. The findings will also be of value to those concerned with the development and implementation of strategies and approaches to assist the development of the informal sector and youth education and training generally.
Since Independence, socio-economic development in Tanzania has been inexorably linked to political ideology and over the last thirty-five years or so development has been dependent on the prevailing political climate. In the six years immediately after independence the economy grew significantly due largely to international investment. In 1967 the government embarked on a policy of African socialism that included the nationalisation of agriculture, industry and commerce and educational institutions. Education and training were considered to be two important agents of change. In addition to a commitment to universal primary education, the government introduced measures to provide both adult and vocational education in rural and urban areas. To facilitate the government's objectives of controlling socio-economic development, a plethora of interventionist policies were introduced, implemented and managed by a burgeoning civil service. In the eight years following the Arusha Declaration (1967) the economy continued to grow, yet in subsequent years this growth was reversed and the economy went into decline.
By the early 1980's it was clear that the state had over-stretched itself and the expected benefits of socialism had not been achieved. In a climate of prolonged economic decline the government introduced the first of its Structural Adjustment Programmes (SAP) designed to reduce fiscal deficits and promote economic growth. However, due to a combination of factors, not least shortages in consumer goods, high unemployment (especially among the youth) and a decline in real wages, a growing number of people were forced to engage in alternative and/or additional methods of income generation. These activities, now commonly known as the Informal Sector, were considered by the government to be subversive and attempts were made to prevent and/or deter participation by legislation and persecution, particularly in urban areas.
Times and attitudes change and by the mid 1980's, influenced by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the international donor community, the government began a programme of economic liberalisation as part of the continuing process of structural adjustment. With the transition to private enterprise, formal sector employment has declined and.public sector employees have become subject to retrenchment. In addition, due to economic and structural difficulties in the education system, ever increasing numbers of young people are leaving school unable to either progress up the academic ladder, gain a place on a vocational training course, or gain employment in the formal sector. The wages of formal sector employees were in real terms still declining, and no longer could the government ignore the potential of the informal sector as a mechanism for providing employment and subsistence income for ever increasing numbers of people. Indeed, credence to such activities was endorsed by President Mwinyi (1987) in a speech which acknowledged the governments' inability to adequately remunerate its employees and encouraged them to participate in other income generating activities to supplement their earnings.
The current situation is, that the country continues to experience severe economic difficulties, as the reforms associated with a free-market permeate and challenge long held norms and beliefs. The informal sector is increasingly perceived as one of the key factors in future economic prosperity and to support this notion, the government, with assistance from the International Labour Organisation (ILO) has published a policy document outlining future intentions to facilitate its development. Fundamental changes are also pending in education;
where work-skills are to be introduced into the primary curriculum, and vocational training will emphasise the change from a supply, to a demand driven system.
The problem 1.1 Rhetoric, rubric and posturing aside, the Tanzanian formal sector (according to the 1991 census data estimates), is currently only capable of absorbing between 7 to 10 % of the new entrants into the labour market, yet school leavers increase the labour force at a rate of about
0.7 million per year. This figure consists of 50% primary school leavers, about 21% school drop-outs and 29% children of school age who have never been enrolled. Compounding the employment problems of school leavers, is a general consensus that educational policy has not been geared towards self employment, rather at all stages, preparation has been towards wage employment. This is a view reinforced by parental expectation and has fuelled the migration from village to town. To these figures are added about 28,000 Form IV leavers (`O' level), 1,000 Form VI leavers (`A' level) and 500 university graduates unable to gain employment in the formal sector. There is also a growing number of retrenchees, estimated to number 25,000 civil servants, a similar number from parastatals and possibly as many as 10,000 private sector workers per year.