20 February 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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Africa Features
KENYA
New lease of life for Kenya’s vocational institutions
Gilbert Nganga
Private firms and foreign agencies are breathing new life into Kenya’s technical and vocational training sector as the government seeks new initiatives to revive the troubled institutions to secure the critical skills-set needed to drive the country’s industrialisation ambitions. Photo: Xinhaunet
Africa Analysis
AFRICA
Leading the way to high-skilled jobs?
Alejandro Caballero
Creating high-skilled and relevant jobs will help the world’s youngest region – with close to 60% of its population under 25 years old – and to do that it requires dynamic new higher education leaders.
Africa News
ZIMBABWE
Sanctions study tender – ‘No innocent research project’
Tonderayi Mukeredzi
The government has awarded the tender to carry out a scientific study of the economic impact of Western sanctions to a consortium of researchers at the University of Zimbabwe in a move that critics say is intended to boost the chances of the ruling party and its almost 93-year-old president in the 2018 general elections.
AFRICA
eLearning partnership opens doors to 10 million students
Ochieng’ O Benny
A landmark agreement signed between the 380-member Association of African Universities, or AAU, and Africa’s largest online education platform eLearnAfrica will enable 10 million students to access higher education through online services provided to AAU member universities.
AFRICA
Universities held back by low research output – Report
Maina Waruru
The 2016 benchmarking report for the World Bank-initiated Partnership for Skills in Applied Sciences, Engineering and Technology shows that research output remains low in Sub-Saharan African universities, causing African institutions to miss out on inclusion in important global university rankings.
AFRICA
Centres of excellence launch calls for students
Maina Waruru
Two Ethiopian-based centres which form part of the Eastern and Southern Africa Higher Education Centers of Excellence – ACE II – project launched in 2015 are due to commence learning activities this year.
ZIMBABWE
Government to reverse 50% cuts to universities
Kudzai Mashininga
The government has reversed its decision to cut by half its allocations to state universities, saying it was a “mistake”.
KENYA
Union mulls government offer to end lecturer strike
Gilbert Nakweya
Public university lecturers said they would continue striking in spite of government’s mid-week offer of KES10 billion (US$97 million) to cater for basic salaries and housing allowance adjustments.
NIGERIA
University quota system – Pushing fairness or mediocrity?
Jackie Opara
Is the current quota system in the Nigerian public university system undermining the public sector higher education in favour of private universities which are not required to adhere to it?
SOUTH AFRICA
University decolonisation – A fight against capitalism?
Sungula Nkabinde
One of the main demands of the #FeesMustFall protests was the implementation of a process towards achieving a decolonised and Afrocentric education. But there doesn't seem to be any widespread consensus on what that means. In the meantime, the patience of students is wearing thin.
KENYA
Chancellors moot centralised lecturer appointments
Christabel Ligami
Qualified and reliable lecturers should be recruited and appointed by a central body, according to a proposal by Kenyan university chancellors that seeks to ensure quality education in both public and private universities.
UWN Webinar
AFRICA
Connecting students with life's realities
Stephen Coan
Students are traditionally selected into universities on the basis of their academic qualifications. But are there more important attributes – such as a desire for social justice – that should be considered and nurtured?
World Round-up
FRANCE
Auditors criticise science super-campus near Paris
Nature
UNITED KINGDOM
Legal academics urge PM to cancel Trump visit
Guardian
UNITED KINGDOM
More than nine in 10 universities restrict free speech
Independent
PAKISTAN
Campus violence rising across the country
The Express Tribune
GLOBAL
Dalai Lama invite by US-Indian chancellor angers China
Hindustan Times
KENYA
Students gives state deadline to end lecturer strike
The Star
AUSTRALIA
International student completion rates remain high
The PIE News
SOUTH AFRICA
Minister calls arson attacks at universities 'barbaric'
African News Agency
CZECH REPUBLIC
Young women have higher education levels than men
CTK
CHINA
Universities lagging in race for donations
South China Morning Post
VIETNAM
Unemployed graduates ‘still at acceptable level’
VietNamNet Bridge
IRELAND
Universities turn a blind eye to disability
The Irish Sun
INDONESIA
Ministry urges private higher institutions to merge
Jakarta Globe
PHILIPPINES
Economists reject full higher education tuition subsidy
The Philippine Star
COSTA RICA-SOUTH KOREA
University president seeks exchanges in the sciences
The Korea Times
NIGERIA
Idle research network reactivated after more than a year
The Guardian Nigeria
CANADA
Education students being 'thrown under the bus' – Judge
CBC News
MALAYSIA
Student fund not in financial trouble – Minister
Bernama
NIGERIA
Nigerian Open University expanding to meet high demand
Premium Times
SOUTH AFRICA
Stellenbosch University adopts redress admissions policy
News24
Global News
TURKEY
Purged academics faced violence, threats of lynching
Brendan O'Malley
Dismissed academics have provided University World News with testimony of being subjected to indefinite arbitrary detention without access to a lawyer; dismissed with their passport and credit cards blocked and prevented from working in academia at home or abroad and denied a pension; or subjected to mob violence and threats of a lynching.
UNITED STATES
First-time international graduate enrolments rise 5%
Mary Beth Marklein
Enrolments in United States universities of first-time international graduate students increased by 5% in autumn 2016, the same rate of growth as the previous year, says a new report. But growth in applications is slowing and political developments are causing uncertainty about future trends.
RUSSIA
Plan to ban officials' children from studying abroad
Eugene Vorotnikov
The Russian parliament or State Duma is expected to vote again on a plan to ban children of Russian officials based in Russia from studying at universities abroad, particularly in Western universities, according to an official spokesperson of the Duma press service. The plan is thought to have increased support among deputies.
NORWAY
Expert group recommends overhaul of research funding
Jan Petter Myklebust
An expert group appointed by the government has proposed to change the procedures on how research funding from the Research Council of Norway is distributed and to cut the administrative budget of the research council by NOK80 million (US$9.6 million).
PHILIPPINES
Students, academics fight Duterte’s death penalty bill
Brennan Weiss
Students and professors from Ateneo de Manila University marched on campus on 31 January in the Philippines capital Manila against a bill that would reinstate the death penalty in the country. Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has urged lawmakers to prioritise the bill, arguing it will deter criminals and drug addicts.
NEPAL
First student union election in eight years expected
Binod Ghimire
A Nepal student union election, to be held for the first time in eight years in one of the world’s largest universities, is being watched closely as a wider test of the popularity of the country’s political parties since Nepal became a federal republic in 2015.
UNITED STATES
Court rebukes Trump’s travel ban
Goldie Blumenstyk, Shannon Najmabadi and Sarah Brown, The Chronicle of Higher Education
In a decision Thursday night, three judges on the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit refused a request from the Trump administration to reinstate a travel ban that had temporarily barred visitors from seven nations, and all refugees, from entering the United States.
Global Commentary
TURKEY
The quest to quell opposition leads to ‘academocide’
Candan Badem
The mass dismissals of academics in Turkey are creating a form of civil death for any opposition to the Islamist government. The dismissals target the best academics – also blocking their passports and credit cards, denying them retirement and preventing them from working abroad – and aim to liquidate universities, replacing them with something along the lines of submissive high schools.
GLOBAL
Building bridges not walls will bring greater innovation
Fernando Leon Garcia
A meeting of the International Association of University Presidents this month heard how effective transnational partnerships will help universities innovate in a more multidisciplinary, student-centred future.
GLOBAL
Feasting on fear with arguments as faulty as Hitler’s
Benjamin Thorne and Michelle Kelso
The United States government’s travel ban and its downplaying of the Nazi genocide against the Jews show a profound failure to empathise and a reshaping of history towards division and exclusion. The parallels between Donald Trump’s America and the early years of Adolf Hitler’s Germany are chilling.
HONG KONG
Towards collaborative governance of universities
Ka Ho Mok
Calls for greater accountability and improved performance in higher education followed the rise of the student movement. More collaboration with industry, business and the community could address these issues and lead to a new form of ‘collaborative governance’.
UNITED KINGDOM
Universities must push for an 'Intelligent Brexit'
Anne Corbett and Claire Gordon
The prime minister is only considering aspects of higher education related to industrial strategy in her Brexit strategy. Universities need to broaden public and political understanding of what it is about the European connection that helps United Kingdom universities to perform as well as they do – and by extension, why a hard Brexit would be so destructive.
World Blog
UNITED KINGDOM
Against a managerialist approach to higher education
Ming Cheng
Academics need to reclaim the idea of educational quality from a purely managerialist approach by emphasising the moral basis of learning and teaching.

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