Harvard Ministerial Student Policy Research Fellows

This is the the fourth year of the Harvard Ministerial Student Policy Research Fellowship, a flagship program engaging Harvard graduate students in providing research support to ‘alumni Ministers’ participating in the Harvard Ministerial Leadership Program. Students are assigned to teams of four to respond to requests from Ministers for policy-related research to help inform ministerial decision making. Usually, this program involves initial remote research by graduate students teams with an…

Former Finance Minister Moeketsi Majoro Takes the Reins

Leading a thinly balanced coalition government is challenge enough for any Prime Minister, but taking office after your predecessor is implicated in the murder of his former wife and on the eve of a global pandemic would severely test the resilience of most. Undaunted, the Rt. Hon. Moeketsi Majoro, Prime Minister of the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho, is upbeat about his test of leadership over the past six months. Interviewed…

Dashboard to Help Ministers Re-Set Priorities in an Era of COVID

The Harvard Ministerial Leadership Program was compelled early in the year to pivot to virtual engagement with the some-80 Program ‘alumni’ Ministers currently in office in countries across Africa, South East Asia and Central America. The challenge was how to be useful to Ministers caught up in the worst global pandemic of the past 100 years while avoiding replicating the work of major institutions such as the World Health Organization…

Student Researchers Help Reshape Maternal Health Care in Gambia

During January Michelle Korte and her classmate Oriol Solé Borràs, traveled to the Gambia to research the social determinants adversely affecting maternal mortality in this small West African nation. This was her first experience in Gambia; she had worked previously in East Africa and Myanmar, and was excited to learn more about this new country. “What really struck me with my time doing in-country research was the huge gulf between…

2020 Tessa Jowell Fellow Following in Her Parents’ Footsteps

The Tessa Jowell Fellowship, named in honor of the late Baroness Tessa Jowell, a founding member of the Harvard Ministerial Program Advisory Board, is annually awarded to a doctoral-level student whose research focuses on policy-related questions of priority to Ministers participating in the Harvard Ministerial Leadership Program. Applicants should intend to conduct most of their research in the subject country. This year’s Fellow, Brenda Onguti, a Doctor of Public Health…

From Cambridge to Village School in Zimbabwe: Student Researchers Help Inform Policy

What competencies do teachers require to implement a 21st century curriculum in Zimbabwe? What are effective strategies for curriculum delivery in a classroom with high teacher-pupil ratios in Kenya? Which social determinants have the biggest impacts on maternal mortality in the Gambia? What are the root causes of drug stock-outs in eSwatini? This past academic year, over 83 Harvard graduate students set out to answer these policy research questions and…

Ghana’s Education Minister Awarded Accolade for Leadership of Historic Reforms

Education reform is always challenging mainly because of the deeply vested interests of stake holders, such as teacher unions and professional associations, as well as parent-teacher associations. Because education is something most people care about, it is also a political hot button issue. This is true of Ghana and successive presidential administrations over the past two decades have committed to education reform with varying degrees of success. While Ghana was…

Adapting to Challenging Times

Like most others, the Harvard Ministerial Leadership Program had to rapidly recalibrate in March when the University, the United States and most of the rest of the world shutdown. The core strength of the Ministerial Program is the opportunity for person-to-person networking and experiential learning it offers Ministers during their time at Harvard. With in-person convening no longer feasible, the Program is capitalizing on its core strength to help inform…

In Historic First Valerie Amos Appointed Master of University College, Oxford

Harvard Ministerial Leadership Program Advisory Board member, Baroness Valerie Amos has been appointed Master of University College, Oxford University. Baroness Amos will be the first female Master of University College, Oxford and the first black head of any Oxford college. Baroness Amos is currently the Director of University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, where she broke another glass ceiling as the first woman of African descent to…

On-line Technical Support Helps Build Professional Capacity in Government Ministries

The Harvard Ministerial Leadership Program’s Virtual Implementation Platform (VIP) is a unique component of the Program’s follow-up support to Ministers after they participate in the Ministerial Leadership Forums at Harvard. The VIP is an online program of technical assistance and capacity development designed to support implementation by senior ministry leadership of the Minister’s primary policy goals.  Over the past two years, over 250 senior ministry officials from 26 ministries and…