29 July 2014 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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What counts for academic productivity in universities?
Philip G Altbach
Universities are engaged in a global arms race of publication; and academics are the shock troops of the struggle. But a ‘one size fits all’ approach to measuring academic productivity does not work and disadvantages certain countries and disciplines. Care needs to be taken when evaluating academic success.
World Blog
Misconceptions about (the end of) internationalisation
Hans de Wit
The future of internationalisation will require a renewed focus on the reasons for doing it and will take into account the changing context for international higher education, where there are no longer barriers between global and local.
Government rushes through Kashgar university plan
Yojana Sharma
Beijing has rushed through plans for a new university in Kashgar, in Xinjiang – the Silk Road region dominated by the country’s Uyghur Turkic minority – as part of a raft of measures to stem rising discontent and unemployment which is fuelling violence in the region.
A revamped vision for international education
Robert Coelen
Dutch Minister for Education, Culture and Science Dr Jet Bussemaker has released a new vision for the internationalisation of education. It positions The Netherlands as a knowledge economy with a quality education system that offers opportunities for talented young people worldwide – who the country would like to attract permanently – and includes all levels of education.
Universities agree need for Arab world mobility scheme
Karen MacGregor
An Erasmus-style exchange programme for the Arab world gained ground at the second Arab-Euro higher education conference held in Jordan last month. “It received substantial support from people who are at universities and also contribute to policy-making in the region,” said Michael Gaebel, head of higher education policy at the European University Association.
Driving tertiary change through country partnerships
Munyaradzi Makoni
The recently published Driving Change – The Story of the South Africa Norway Tertiary Education Development Programme, edited by Dr Trish Gibbon, describes a successful development partnership that after 10 years had activities in 16 universities in seven Southern African countries. Why did it work? The reasons start with the shared principles and values of the two country partners.
International student recruitment – Integrity questions
Karin Fischer, The Chronicle of Higher Education
The agent debate is dead. Long live the integrity debate. For some time now, the discussion about whether American colleges could use commission-based agents when recruiting students abroad has been the hottest of hot-button issues in international admissions, with each camp staking out fiercely partisan positions.
World Round-up
Senate blocks cuts to university funding
The Sydney Morning Herald
Four universities banned from accepting new students
The Moscow Times
Appeals panel upholds race in university admissions
The New York Times
How one college handled a sexual assault complaint
New York Times
Unrest throws students' plans into chaos
Danwon students to get special admission to colleges
Korea Times
Property power couple launches education fund
The Wall Street Journal
Overseas academics claim discrimination in recruitment
UGC cautions universities against violating norms
Unions object to zero-hours lecturer advert
The Scotsman
The MOOC revolution that never happened
The Conversation
College body calls for greater freedom for FE
Times Educational Supplement
Technical universities to drive socio-economic growth
Students with fewer than 300 points struggle to stay in college
The Irish Times
Business and education unite for knowledge economy
21st century university recruitment practices
Lesley Wilson
While universities in Europe are increasingly operating in a global environment, their human resource structures, recruitment and promotion mechanisms are still largely anchored in national legal frameworks, traditions and practices. This can pose a major challenge for universities as they seek to identify, employ and keep highly talented staff and researchers.
Transnational education – A key international strategy
Vangelis Tsiligiris
International student mobility to the United Kingdom is lessening from Asia due to capacity building in home countries. Strategic investment in transnational education can help this capacity building and should be seen as part of an international business strategy rather than a peripheral issue.
‘Organised anarchy’ – The enduring university paradigm
Damtew Teferra
In the competitive global economy where knowledge reigns supreme, it is prudent to ensure that knowledge workers – academics – are given more, not less, leadership leverage, managerial space, a nurturing environment and academic freedom. The hot pursuit of corporate managerialism has serious implications for academic productivity, engagement and morale.
How to boost your university up the rankings
Yves Gingras
New statistics suggest a link between highly cited researchers having more than one affiliation and the position of certain institutions in world university rankings.
The need for an ASEAN University
Roger Y Chao Jr
As the ASEAN region has matured, now is the right time to revisit the idea of establishing an ASEAN University along the lines of the European University Institute.
Education minister resigns over research fraud scandal
Mimi Leung and Yojana Sharma
Taiwan’s Education Minister Chiang Wei-ling resigned on Monday 14 July over his links to a researcher whose papers were retracted from an international scientific journal because of alleged fraud.
UK universities minister quits
David Jobbins
David Willetts, the United Kingdom universities and science minister in David Cameron's coalition government since 2010, has quit to return to the back benches and will leave parliament at the next general election in 2015.
Anti-corruption unit to police university exam
Matt Blomberg
The Cambodian government’s Anti-Corruption Unit has been called on to police next month’s national school-leaving exam in a bid to stamp out systemic cheating that has for decades compromised the quality of high school students applying for university places.
US diaspora scholars pledge help for home universities
Tunde Fatunde
Top Nigerian scientists based in the United States have entered into a formal agreement to assist universities at home, with a view to supporting postgraduate programmes. Academics in Nigeria have welcomed the move because of its potential positive multiplying effects.
Top universities fail to attract poorer students
David Jobbins
The United Kingdom’s élite universities are failing to attract students from disadvantaged backgrounds despite making “considerable” efforts and offering financial support to offset the impact of higher tuition fees.
Universities link with UN environment programme
Geoff Maslen
Britain’s Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges has signed a three-year agreement with the United Nations Environment Programme under UNEP’s Global Universities Partnership on Environment and Sustainability scheme. The partnership will deliver training and networking opportunities and will put the association’s Green Gown Awards for universities before a global audience.
Poor conditions blamed for Venezuelan scientist exodus
Andrea Small Carmona
Government-funded universities in Venezuela are witnessing a flight of scientists and professors, leaving them unable to fill posts, according to recent reports.
New West African higher education quality project
Francis Kokutse
The German Academic Exchange Service, DAAD, has signed an agreement with the Association of African Universities, Ghana’s National Accreditation Board and the Nigerian National Universities Commission to promote internal quality assurance in higher education in a new project for the West African region.
Bitter race rows follow 20-year democracy celebrations
Karen MacGregor
In the wake of 20 years of democracy celebrations, two occurrences in universities starkly reminded South Africans of how far the country has yet to go to overcome apartheid. The death of popular Stellenbosch Vice-chancellor Russel Botman sparked accusations that he had been ‘killed’ by Afrikaner conservatives, while Cape Town was fiercely attacked by black intellectuals after unveiling a new student admissions policy.
Kenyatta launches virtual learning ‘Anywhere School’
Maina Waruru
Kenyatta University has become the first in East Africa to have a fully-fledged digital school, offering a wide range of courses through virtual and open learning. A free tablet uploaded with course materials for every student is expected to be a huge drawcard.

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