Haitian higher education, funding, and economic development : The missing links

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Abstract : Despite the general consensus that higher education is essential for economic development, Haitian higher education has been woefully underfunded. This paper asserts that the reason for the lack of investment in Haitian higher education is two-fold : the inconsistency between international agencies’ policy position statements and their actual investment record, and the lack of a compelling academic plan from the Haitian public higher education system. To support the first hypothesis, the paper takes the World Bank as an example and juxtaposes the Bank’s policy positions on higher education and the Bank’s actual performance at investing in higher education in terms of its impact on economic growth, ceteris paribus, for selected countries. For the second assertion, the paper reviews two recent Haitian higher education planning documents to evaluate their effectiveness at presenting an academic vision.