Strengthening training in public administration

Project description

Title: Strengthening of public administration education in Afghanistan
Commissioned by: German Federal Foreign Office (AA)
Country: Afghanistan
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE)
Overall term: 2011 to 2016


The creation of an effective state administration is a key challenge for the future of Afghanistan. At present there are hardly any qualified personnel capable of building up the necessary institutions. Sound professional training and development opportunities for public service staff are essential prerequisites for an effective and constitutional administration, yet these things that are in very short supply.


The Afghan Government is laying the foundations for standardised basic and further public administration education for expert and management staff. A more effective state administration provides services that are oriented to the needs of the citizens.


On behalf of the German Federal Foreign Office, GIZ is supporting the Afghan Ministry of Higher Education in its efforts to strengthen the technical expertise and HR capacities, as well as the institutional structures and processes of the partner institutions and universities. Providing technical advice through the project are the University of Potsdam’s consulting firm UP-Transfer (specialists for knowledge and technology transfer), the Max-Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law, and the Centre for International Migration and Development (CIM). German professors and lecturers are working alongside officials from the Ministry of Higher Education as well as faculty members and deans in the Afghan universities, in order to establish the appropriate conditions for a consistent administrative education.

The experts are also assisting the Afghan universities and institutions in developing their respective management capacities and structures to enable them to collaborate in building common training approaches and a standardised bachelor degree in public administration.

The project is coordinating the construction of the Public Administration Faculty at the Balkh University, as well as a dormitory for the new campus. It provides the necessary expertise for the planning and execution of the project, while most of the construction work is carried out by local contractors.


The universities in Herat, Jalalabad, Kabul, Kandahar and Mazar-e Sharif have been implementing bachelor programmes in public administration since 2013. The universities and the Ministry of Higher Education and have agreed upon, and put in place a standardised curriculum for the bachelor degree. The Afghan Civil Service Institute (ACSI) has developed a standardized curriculum for the training of civil servants in all provinces of the country.

By April 2015, a total of 2,480 students had enrolled to study public administration at the five universities. Evening classes are also available for working people, meaning that, as of 2015, more than 2,700 students are enrolled for the bachelor course. Of these, almost 15% are woman.

Since 2012, German professors and lecturers have provided professional coaching in Afghanistan to prepare the Afghan lecturers to teach their public administration courses.

Since mid-2012, annual summer and a winter academies have been held in Turkey and in India. The Public Administration Summer Research Conference was held at Kabul University August 1-6, 2015. Professors from University of Potsdam, Indian Institute of Public Administration and Indira Ghandi National Oen University attended. The academies encourage academic exchanges between the Afghan lecturers and the German and regional partner institutions.

By linking the theoretical learning at the five universities with the practical training provided by the ACSI, the project is promoting the sound and sustainable education of young leaders for Afghanistan’s public administration.

With the support of the project, the Ministry of Higher Education and the independent Administration Reform and Civil Service Commission have agreed to develop a strategy and common standards for the education and training of public administration employees.