Introduction: Socioeconomic Development in Botswana
ILY MAFELA, TAPOLOGO MAUNDENIZ, GODISANG OOKODIB (Guest Editors)
In 2011, the Organization for Social Science Research in Eastern and Southern Africa (OSSREA) Botswana Chapter, partnered with the Journal of Social Development in Africa (JSDA), in order to produce Special Issue of the Journal. The OSSREA Botswana Chapter was founded in 1985, and draws membership from educational and research institutions, non—governmental organisation, as well as individual social science researchers and graduate students. The JSDA which is a peer—reviewed Journal hosted by the University of Zimbabwe`s School of Social Work, has been in circulation for over 25 years without interruption. The Journal publishes analyses, findings and recommendations relating to social development in Africa, including theoretical, empirical and descriptive works and relevant scholarly discussions of ethics. The Special Issue of the JSDA focused on key issues relating to Botswana’s socio-economic development policies and practices. The partnership between OSSREA and the JSDA demonstrates the ongoing efforts of the two entities to promote mentorship and capacity-building in the area of research and publications.
Conserving and Sustaining Culture Through Traditional Dress
POTLAKO L.P. DISELE‘, DAVID J. TYLER2, EJ. POWER
The government of Botswana through its National Policy on Culture (2001) and the National Ecotourism Strategy (2002) is committed to preserving national culture and historical heritage. The policy stipulates that valuable heritage must be preserved and developed in order to foster a sense of national identity pride and unity. It is necessary to reformulate cultural values and valuing processes, in order to better understand the Setswana culture and its meaning in material objects. To this end, dress as one of the valuable material culture objects is essential for signifying and expressing subtle cultural value and social relationships. The intimate link between people and their traditional dress lies at the core of ethnic identity and has assumed a higher level of significance among consumers and tourists who collect symbolic items. A specific emphasis on a national traditional dress seems to be lacking in Botswana. This paper argues that there is need to restore traditional dress in Botswana, which would serve as a symbol of national identity and cultural heritage. The paper is based on the findings of a study that explored the historical underpinnings of national dress in Botswana, and how national dress could be used to sustain culture.
Stakeholder Perspectives on the Link Between Business Studies and Quality Education: Botswana’s Experience
LILLIAN ZAHRA MOKGOSP
A more educated society may translate into higher rates of innovation, higher overall productivity through firms 'ability to introduce new and better production methods and faster introduction of new technology (UNESCO, 2005). It is for this reason that contemporary thought suggests that business subjects are crucial for achievement of quality education, towards economic development. with the above assertion in mind the current study interrogated conceptual reflections on what quality education entails, and stakeholder perspectives about business subjects, and their potential contribution, to quality education, which could enable individuals to cope during hard times. The study highlights the age—old debate on the contested meanings of quality education. It draws from the recent educational research findings that examined the concept of quality education, as one of the strategies to promote economic development, International instruments such as the Millennium Development Goals ' (MDG s) and Education for All (EFA) have provided guidance and direction towards achievement of quality basic education through particular subject offerings in school curricula. The study used an open—ended questionnaire to survey 57 participants in an effort to explore stakeholder perspectives on the contribution of Business Studies as a school subject in Botswana.
Entrepreneurship Policy, Enterprise Diversification and the Motivation Factor: The Case of Botswana
ZORORO MURANDA', THUSO MPHELA, MORVYN NYAKUDYA
The paper interrogates the link between entrepreneurship policy motivation in business start—ups, growth and enterprise diversification. The link has received considerable attention in developed economies but only limited attention in developing economies. The aim of the study therefore, was to establish the extent of policy influence on motivation and growth, and SME diversification as a prelude to wider economic diversification. The paper is based on a nationwide survey of small and medium enterprises undertaken in Botswana. The study surveyed 226 enterprises covering ten economic sectors. Factor analysis was used to derive factors whose dimensions were assumed to have a close relationship with motivation to SME start-up and growth. The results indicate that policies pronouncements have not always had the push influence on SME start—up and enterprise diversification. Instead key policies such as the tender policies and preferential purchasing policy with clauses meant to assist SMEs have not had a trickle-down effect. Entrepreneurs considered the demands of local authorities an impediment to enterprise start-up and growth. The study. inter alia, recommends the communication of policy right down to the bottom of the entrepreneurial pyramid, as a way of encouraging SME start-up and growth. An intervention to make it mandatory for private financial institutions to lend to SMEs is also recommended.
Internationalization of the Language Curriculum at the University of Botswana: Current Trends
GREGORY H. KAMWENDO
The article analyzes the internationalization of the language curriculum at the University of Botswana. The internationalization process is part of the implementation of the university Policy on internationalization that was rolled out in2006. The policy has three objectives: to expand international student and staff exchange; to expand international research cooperation; and to enhance the internationalization of all curricula. The paper analyzes the linguistic dimension of this initiative. Through the internationalization process, the University has established Chinese and Portuguese language programmes. Realizing that the institution also needs to be of local relevance, the University of Botswana plans to establish a Bachelor of Arts degree programme specializing in Setswana. The article considers the rationale for; implications and complications of the internationalization of the language curriculum.
Educating for Democratic Engagement in Botswana’s Democracy: Challenges of Promoting Democratic Education
AGREEMENT LATHI JOTlA
In order for democracy to be sustained in any state, it is fundamentally crucial that the education system should teach citizens about democracy and how to participate in the democratic process. Participation in the socio—political process should be the foundation of active democratic engagement by citizens. Educational institutions are supposed to be platforms for social justice where the learner is given a chance to be heard. In a democracy schools are supposed to educate the citizens so that they can participate in all matters affecting them. This paper contends that in order for Botswana’s citizens to actively participate in the democratic process. there is need for schools to shift their focus and promote democratic education in which pedagogies used are seen to be nurturing awareness of the concept of democracy among the learners. The paper argues that failure to promote democratic education ' in schools could ultimately compromise the pursuit of democratic principles. The paper further argues that a pragmatic curriculum would be well placed to help foster civic-mindedness and political consciousness among the citizens, thus enabling them to fully participate in the country s democracy The paper concludes by noting that Botswana is education system has not done enough in terms of addressing the relationship between education and democracy and puts forward a number of suggestions on the way forward
Eradicating Poverty and Promoting Dignity in Botswana through Contextual Theology of Liberation:
Challenges and Prospects.
Poverty in post—independence Botswana remains a significant problem for many people today as it inhibits human dignity. Eradicating it is equally a serious challenge. The difficulty with fighting poverty is that oppressive issues such as landlessness, gender/ethnic disparity and HIV and AIDS continue to make its eradication elusive/or all concerned. This paper defines poverty and considers different kinds, or levels of poverty. It notes that poverty translates into limited access to basic necessities of life and including education, health, recreation, potable water and public hygiene, The paper proposes the application of principles and methods of Contextual theology of liberation in eradicating poverty, for the reason that the basic tenets of this strategy provide perhaps the most pragmatic model in the fight against many social ills. It observes that Contextual theology of liberation is deeply—rooted in the Catholic belief system, and acknowledges the conventional definition of this concept, which posits that Contextual theology of liberation refers to the kind o theology whose knowledge, thinking and practice. arise from and are influenced by the context in which it occurs. The paper concludes live noting that approaches used in Contextual theology of liberation shed light on efforts to identity the most effective ways of eradicating poverty, because built in this paradigm is an understanding that poverty is a form of oppression that requires some form of liberation.