Forming human capital: Quality education a must

In the recent epoch, knowledge is gradually becoming the utmost source of the wealth of nations, economies, and people.

Education is one of the most powerful weapons which can change people, communities, nations, the future of humanity, and thus the entire world. The term ‘knowledge’ simply denotes an organized approach to conceiving education which refers to a theoretical or practical, implicit or explicit, formal or informal, and systematic or particular understanding approach. Globally, we are witnessing a strong power structure that is keeping the world together affecting human society on every level, and that emerging power structure is ‘Knowledge.’

Sustainable development is not possible unless the requisite quality change in the standard of education is brought forth. The criteria like quality pre-university education, superior technical and vocational education, skilled based training, standard higher education, research, development and innovation, application of Information and Communication Technology, etc. which intervene in forming humans into human capital and transform society into a knowledge-driven society – pragmatic initiatives should carry through to ensure them all.

Education must be impactful, a life changer, and a dynamic agent to turn itself into a breeding ground for the knowledge economy. Here no compromise with quality education should be made. The systematic mechanism of imparting knowledge must be very genuine in nature which can successfully covert into a significant catalyst to desired socio-economic changes. It is commonly seen that the concerned quarter often feels complacency of having a high rate of education and the hybrid ratio of academic results. However, Bangladesh comparatively is in a worse position than other countries in terms of quality education among the variables of the Global Knowledge Index.

Policymakers and thinkers have been dreaming of a fast-digitized Bangladesh. Besides, it is projected that by 2031, Bangladesh will adorn the middle-income status, and by 2041, hoping, Bangladesh will be designated as a developed country. Surely, we have cordial compliance with these mammoth aspirations regarding our beloved motherland. But, the reality is somehow unmatched and toughest as we are still far behind in education, technology, and innovation, and even many vital technologies are still beyond our control. There is no magic indeed in thinking substitutes without ensuring quality education that creates human capital and focuses on science and technology-supported up-to-date knowledge structure.

In the recent epoch, knowledge is gradually becoming the utmost source of the wealth of nations, economies, and people as well. Therefore, policymakers sincerely need to realize that strategic thinking and scenario building are imminent to form a long-term future vision and to ensure a strong foothold and competitive edge in light of sweeping changes taking place at the global level. In this regard, our knowledge imparting mechanism must be redesigned according to competitive reality. We have to project an ever better instance of disseminating knowledge by having a justified passion for a nation’s strength to confront multifaceted challenges ahead.

The demographic dividend is the real pride for Bangladesh. So, the country’s large youth population has to be equipped with the right set of knowledge and skills to make them developmental change agents in the speedy changing world. To prepare our indomitable youth as human capital and keep the tempo with a balanced economic development pathway, the country might undertake a framework for formulating the National Knowledge Management Policy. The policy assistance will integrate the very domains of knowledge and education impartation in a satisfactory approach to meet the desire of the target audience.

Human capital is an excellent term that will never be replaced by Artificial Intelligence (AI) in this fast-forwarding globe. The true need for a human’s caliber and talents is infinite and constant. This is why now human capital is being considered an investable resource in the economy. So, the blueprint of reshaping humans into human capital through knowledge is a substantial issue to address. No suitable example can be found where development has been achieved without top-notch human effort and inborn brilliance. That is why knowledge-based human capital is an emerging concept of paramount importance that deserves to be undertaken stringently.

As knowledge comprising science, information technology, research, and innovation are the prime mover of economy and society as well, humans are treated as the repository of knowledge capital in today’s science and technology-bound society and economy. Henceforth, there is no alternative to a realistic and integrated effort to secure time-demanded education to impart quality knowledge.

Bangladesh must not lag behind other nations in today’s science and technology-driven society in respect of developing its human capital. The ability to survive and thrive in this new era would depend a lot on how better Bangladesh is efficient to educate and train its people in the different fields of knowledge and thus turn them into skilled human resources. We deeply hope that policymakers and the stateauthority would adopt suitable strategies to promote knowledge and bloom it as the main component for establishing a knowledge economy founded on human capital.

The author is an academic and psycho-social counsellor.

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