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Manpower planning : technical education for planning for regional deverlopment, the case examined for Tanzania. Hiyobo, Lucia

Abstract

Tanzania is one of those countries which carries the label of "underdeveloped or undeveloped". The central theme of this study is to examine what Tanzania should do in order to get started on the road to development. But before doing so, it is essential to illustrate what development means to Tanzania. Everybody in the country knows that there are three enemies to be fought, poverty, disease and ignorance. In other words the country needs high agricultural productivity; industries which will lead to a high per capita income; provision of hospitals and health centres; building more and better houses for a healthy living in order to conquer diseases and thirdly, providing schools, colleges, universities, community centres, transportation and other news media for circulation of knowledge and ideas in order to get rid of ignorance. Economists have always regarded capital natural resources as the basis of economic growth. This is all true but, among these, one element takes priority over the others. This is labour, which is termed in this study as manpower. For development purposes, no matter how rich the country may be in capital and natural resources, if they are not developed or mobilized they will not be of any benefit to the people. One of the world's handicaps is, up to this time in its history, that man has been the sole agent in mobilizing capital and natural resources for development. In the final analysis then, the development of a country depends on the ability of her people to put capital and natural resources into production. On this basis, manpower planning is essential for any country in the process of developing. However, there is need to specify the type of manpower that is needed for developmental tasks. In this case it is the quality more than the quantity of manpower that a country needs. It takes skilled men to discover and exploit natural resources, to mobilize capital to develop technology, to produce goods and to carry on trade. If a country is unable to develop its human resources it cannot build anything, whether it be a modern political system, a sense of national unity or a prosperous economy. The development of a country then is based upon its power to develop and effectively utilize the innate capacities of its people. The next question to ask is, how can this be done? There is only one means of equipping people with the skills and that is through education and training. This involves many elements but they are all inter-related. Education includes formal education at all levels. In addition, it covers on-the-job training, individual self-development through correspondence courses, informal as well as formal adult education. Basic education equips people with the ability to read, write and count which is essential in communication. New ideas are being formulated and the people should be able to read and understand them. They should be able to write and keep accounts, for example on farms, of the products of their farms. Most important, education trains people to think and reason so that they can make the right decisions whether it be on the farms, in factories or in administration. While every aspect of education and training is essential in the developing countries, because of their poverty they cannot afford to provide all at the same time so there is need to make selection on what aspect of education to put most emphasis while not ignoring other aspects completely. It is the hypothesis of this thesis that technical education should be given the emphasis if a country desires to develop. First, most of these countries are dependent on agriculture, 85 percent of Tanzanians live directly off the land, therefore, agricultural production has to be increased, which can only be done through the use of better implements such as shovels, load carriers, straddle carriers and bulldozers. Increase in agricultural production also includes use of fertilizers and improved seeds. Livestock keeping is an important part of agriculture in Tanzania. In order to improve the quality of livestock, livestock feeds have to be processed, dams have to be constructed to make water available for the animals. Dipping and innoculation is essential to protect the animals against various diseases. Second, there is need to industrialize so that the farm products can be processed within the country. All these tasks will require technically capable people. One aspect of today's life that has to be borne in mind is that man is living in a technological age which at the same time is not static. To cope with this change, a country has to provide technicians who are at the same time educated to be able to adjust to the technological innovations as well as the results that technological advancement brings. For the purposes of development other people also must understand this need of technicians. The term "technician" is a collective rather than an individual description. In engineering, where perhaps greatest clarity has so far been achieved, it embraces a wide range of duties, linking those of a scientist and technologist on the one hand and the operative on the other. The technician carries out duties which demand a higher level of scientific and technical knowledge than is needed by the craftsman and operative, but a less comprehensive and more specialized understanding than that of the scientist and technologist. In this study, however, "technician" will include the scientists and technologists. Technical engineers engage on some aspects of development and design, on the supervision of manufacture, erection and commissioning, drafting, inspection and testing, and on the operation, maintenance and repair of engineering plant and equipment. These are duties which are steadily extending in range, and increasing in complexity and importance with the impact of technological progress on the form and equipment and on the process involved in the industrial production. In this thesis, it is intended to draw heavily on the experience of other countries, particularly the Soviet Union, United States and Britain as well as other countries from the developed and underdeveloped world. These are taken as guidelines to suggestions which will be made as to what Tanzania can do in order to provide the technicians which she needs. It is considered that if Tanzania is to provide these technicians with the limited financial resources available, she will have to utilize all the means of providing the skills - formal technical education in secondary schools, technical colleges, universities; one-the-job training, as well as through correspondence courses. In order to do this, the government will have to encourage public as well as private industries and other establishments to provide technical training for their employees. Finally to implement the manpower plans, each country needs a central manpower planning body which will direct and supervise the training programs of all the organizations and ministries. If these are left to train people as they wish, the national manpower objectives of providing people for developmental purposes will not be achieved and this is likely to lead to a failure of the development plans.

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