Transfer of technical training know-how : a study of consultancy services in aid practice

Sammanfattning: In this thesis an aid financed attempt to transfer technical training know- how in the form of consultancy support is described and analysed. Between 1992 and 1996 Swedish consultants acted as advisers during the establishment phase of the Aswan training centre. The primary aim of the centre was to supply the hydro power plants on the Nile with skilled staff. The general aim of the study was to describe, analyse and explain issues shaping the training at the centre and the influence of the consultants. The organisation of work at plants in Sweden and Egypt was investigated, as was the Swedish training centre where the consult­ants worked. Theories about development, aid and technology transfer are used to explore the theoretical base underpinning decisions to use aid resources in the form of consultancy services. Data was collected through participatory research during eight months. The empirical ana­lysis is inspired by Basil Bernstein's conceptual framework on the reconstruction of society, while the wider perspective relies on a world system theory. The findings reveal that a gap theory with a presumed trickle down effect justified the use of aid-resources. The use of con­sultants is explained by a market oriented approach, both in the Swe­dish aid authority and the Swedish training centre. In Sweden, the work was earned out by autonomous groups under market conditions with explicit time control. In Egypt, work was hierarchically organised with a plan economy system and strict control of material. In both countries the focus was on reliable production and optimal maintenance of equip­ment. In Egypt, creation of employment opportunities and staff social security was emphasised. Courtesy rules, the local staff's view of the consultants presence as a gift, the consultants view of themselves as salesmen and the contractual stipulation positioning them as advisers contributed to disguising inherent conflicts. Although the operational goals were reached, the training developed into a system where the local order of work was recreated. The findings indicate that dependency decreased regarding planning and implementation of training while it increased with respect to training equipment and learning material.