Universitaire de la Francophonie (AUF)
The Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie (AUF) is an association that brings together about 800 institutions of higher learning and research in more than 100 countries in the world. Kenyatta University became a member of AUF through a partnership agreement signed in 2013. Other than Kenya, other AUF member countries in the Indian Ocean Region include Comoros, India, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Reunion, Seychelles, South Africa and Tanzania. It is worth noting that Kenyatta University is the first university in English speaking eastern Africa region to become a member.
The AUF supports scientific excellence with a view to fostering societal development and this has been going on for over fifty years that the association has been in existence.
AUF pursues its mission through the following three main areas of activity:
- Coordinating French-speaking academic cooperation worldwide. In so doing, the AUF strengthens academic cooperation between member institutions in a spirit of solidarity, complementarily, and knowledge sharing while respecting cultural and linguistic diversity.
- Supporting academic institutions, staff and students by offering services to students, lecturers and researchers including mobility funding, access to on-line degree courses, and support for research projects.
- Taking part in international projects alongside major organizations by making its expertise available to development agencies and Francophonie member states. AUF takes a stance on international higher education development issues such as broadening access to academic studies, assessment and ranking of universities, access of women to higher education, and the use of digital technology in educational settings.
Partnership between AUF and Kenyatta University
There has been a close working relationship between Kenyatta University and AUF since the signing of the partnership agreement in 2013. This partnership has led to the setting up of a Francophone partner Digital Centre at the university [Campus Numérique Francophone partenaire in French (CNFp)], hosted by the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the Graduate School Complex.
The Francophone partner Digital Centre at the university (CNFp)
This centre was officially commissioned by Mr. Phillipe Bataille, the AUF Director, Indian Ocean Region on 1st of February 2017. It serves to support inter-university cooperation through trainings on research using ICT, publication and scientific events as well as mobility of students and lecturers. It is also meant to facilitate digital and scientific opening up of universities as well as strengthening graduate schools. The first activity hosted by the centre was the AUF Regional Graduate School seminar held from 20th to 24th February 2017. Participants in this training were from India, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Kenya Reunion and South Africa. Upcoming activities include post graduate students’ training on research, teacher training workshops among others.
The centre is open to all students, teachers and researchers both in French and other disciplines offered by institutions of higher learning in the region.