The Department of Labour and Human Resource Studies (DOLAHRS), of the School for Development Studies, has held a three-day curriculum development workshop.
The workshop held with sponsorship from the International Labour Organisation (ILO) was aimed at developing Masters and Doctor of Philosophy Degrees as well as short courses for the Department.
Remark my Head of Department
In her remarks at the workshop, the Head, DOLAHRS, Dr. Angela Akorsu, noted that the upgrade of the Institute for Development into a School with four departments including DOLAHRS meant that the Department had to develop its own programmes. She indicated that though some of the programmes were already in existence, it had become necessary to run them at the postgraduate level. “We used to run certificate and Diploma programmes in Labour Studies but since we have this new department, we intend to upgrade them to the postgraduate level to respond to the needs of Labour Movement” she explained
Dr. Akorsu indicated a consultative workshop was held in March 2019 which brought together stakeholders from Ghana and other countries as well as the ILO to deliberate on areas to be considered for the proposed programmes. “It is out of the outcome of the consultative workshop that we are working towards developing the curricula for our programmes” she noted.
A representative of ILO, Dr. David Dorkenoo, noted that his organisation was supporting DOHLARS to develop programmes to build the capacities of Trade Unions and their leaders as well as people involved in policy making on labour issues so that the working environment would be enhanced. He indicated that the programme would help trade union leaders and stakeholders to discuss, negotiate and influence government policies relating to workers. “If we don’t build their capacities, they can go to the table with limited knowledge. It is not anything that they can say they are going on strike; they should be able to argue their case by putting out facts and figures to support their demands,” he averred.
Dr. Dorkenoo noted that unenlightened leaders of labour unions and workers would result in chaos, misunderstanding and frequent strike actions which had the tendency to cause instability in the country. He further noted that “ If the labour unions are not well educated, businesses will come and invest then take all the money away and at the end of the day, there will be poverty which is also not the best because the country will not advance” he advised.
The Provost of the College of Humanities and Legal Studies, Prof. Francis Eric Amuquandoh called for flexibility in the design of the programmes especially the short courses to attract most of the target group. “You need to target individuals, workers and trade union members as well as the general public who are interested in developing their capacities in Labour Studies,” he added.
Prof. Amuquandoh reminded participants of the workshop to bear in mind that their focus should be on enlightening employers to foster harmony between union leaders and employees. “We must adopt human centered agenda and invest in building capacity through lifelong learning” he noted. He implored participants to consider the gender dimension of the programmes and courses and also learn best practices from institutions in other countries running the labour programme.
The workshop brought together lecturers from the Department and other stakeholders on the field.