27. May 2021

Over 860 Peruvian officials complete strategic planning course with social media and peer-to-peer learning

Closing session of a 5-week virtual training course in Peru

More than 860 public officials from 20 cities across Peru have completed a five-week virtual training course of the Subnational Public Finance Management (PFM) Programme, which our Lima-based team implements under the Swiss-Peruvian SECO Cooperation.

Focused on strategic planning approaches and new Peruvian planning regulations, the training was developed in collaboration with the PFM Experts Network. This is an initiative of PFM graduates from a previous diploma course offered by the Programme.

Agile and creative training approach

The success of the training course follows our team’s growing experience in offering virtual training in a context of strict lockdowns and challenging internet and computer access, which course co-organiser Limberg Chero explains in this blog post. The course included:

  • Self-paced eLearning courses with videos hosted on the Basel Institute’s LEARN virtual learning platform, giving students the flexibility to study in their own time.
  • Real case studies presented through recorded interviews with experienced public officials who were members of the PFM Experts Network. This form of peer-to-peer learning helped students connect theory to reality.
  • A final exam with fixed timings.
  • Facebook and Telegram groups with 1,100+ members. These channels were partly for sharing news and updates but also for learners to raise questions and interact with one another about the course topics.
  • Virtual meetings via Zoom to allow students to deepen their interactions and grow their networks. These were triggered by the high levels of interaction between the students on Facebook and Telegram.

Breaking the ice and building bridges

The interaction, mutual support and relationship-building are a crucial aspect of the course design and outcomes. The training approach helped to build bridges between different groups of people thinking about or implementing planning policies.

Tellingly, it is now the graduates themselves – and their institutions – who are reaching out to their networks and recommending they sign up to future editions of the course.

Although the Subnational PFM Programme is targeted at 11 countries, the virtual nature of the training means it that public servants all across Peru can benefit at no extra cost.

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