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The ACE Project

The Africa Higher Education Centers of Excellence for Development Impact (ACE Impact) is a regional higher education project supported by the World Bank and Agence française de développement (AFD). The project supports approximately 50 Centers of Excellence, Emerging Centers and Colleges of Engineering in 11 West African countries (and Djibouti). Centers address the regional development challenges through a focused programme of postgraduate education and applied research.

ACE Impact is a Results-Based Funding project, in which Centers must achieve Disbursement Linked Indicators (DLIs). DLI 4 includes several different elements focused on Quality of Education and Research through Regionalisation. These elements are designed to support activities that focus on global good practices for higher education, and to provide institutions with the flexibility to pursue activities focused on Quality of Education and Research based upon need and priority.

There is an intrinsic link between Centers of Excellence and the host institution. Centers of Excellence benefit from strong institutional support, both from the Vice-Chancellor/Rector and the institutional capacity. At the same time, Centers of Excellence can catalyse broader institutional strengthening of the host university.  

Within DLI 4, there is an expectation that ACE Impact host institutions will pursue international programme accreditation by the end of the ACE programme in 2024. QAA has developed a specific pathway towards International Programme Accreditation for ACE Impact host institutions.


International Programme Accreditation for ACE Impact

What does IPA Accreditation mean?

International Programme Accreditation for ACE Impact (IPA for ACE Impact) has been specially developed to provide institutions taking part in ACE Impact with an independent peer review which may lead to international programme accreditation by QAA.

A successful IPA for ACE Impact means that you are eligible to display this QAA International Programme Accreditation Badge, which demonstrates that your approach to programme design, development and monitoring are not only effective, but also comparable with international best practice.