Educational Research (ISSN:2141-5161) Vol. 2(4), pp. 1088-1093 April 2011         
Copyright © 2011 International Research Journals


Full Length Research Paper 

Financing of higher education in Africa: A case of Ethiopia public universities cost containment measures

Kennedy Munyua Waweru1*, Sewale Abate2, Guyo S. Huka3, Shano M. Dawe4 

1Mount Kenya University, Department of Accounting and Finance, P.O. Box 342, Thika, Kenya

2Faculty of Business and Economics, Bahir Dar University, P.O. Box 79, Bahir Dar, Ethiopia

3Department of Business Studies, Meru University College of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 972, Meru, Kenya

4Department of Business Studies, Meru University College of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 972 Meru, Kenya

*Corresponding author Email:, Tel: +254 722 344 475 

Received 21 March, 2011; Accepted 2 May, 2011


With the tremendous increase in university students enrolments experienced in Ethiopian public universities since years 2005, financing of university education has become topical issue among education stakeholders.  This paper explores extent to which Ethiopian public universities have instituted cost containment measures to bridge the financing gap occasioned by the limited public funding.  The study which is exploratory in nature, sampled eight public universities that have been in existence for more than two years. Findings indicated that the academic staff ratios and non academic staff ratios were sub optimal and below those of selected African universities. Physical facilities utilization was also found to be sub optimal. Most of the universities managed all noncore services rather than outsource as is the common practice and most universities did not have an inventory of facilities. The study’s findings indicate that more students and programmes could be implemented within the existing infrastructure in Ethiopian public universities, if the resources available were used efficiently.


Key words: Cost Containment, Academic Staff Ratio, Non-academic Staff Ratio, Outsourcing.