27 January 2015 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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Africa News
Universities set to reopen in two Ebola-hit countries
Francis Kokutse
Higher education institutions in the three West African countries hit by Ebola have been closed for nearly a year. While the authorities in Guinea and Liberia are taking steps to open schools and institutions that were shut following the disease outbreak, officials in Sierra Leone are still monitoring the situation.
Africa News
War-torn nation’s universities desperately need support
Wagdy Sawahel
Somalia’s higher education sector has been growing rapidly. However, lack of government oversight, low quality, high levels of poverty, political instability and security challenges have been hindering reforms. A new prime minister has raised hopes – but is likely to be distracted by numerous other pressing problems.
Education unions reject new university law
Jane Marshall
Higher education unions have condemned the new framework law for universities passed on 26 December, which they say violates institutions’ freedom.
University regulator drafts law to accredit professionals
Maina Waruru
Kenya’s higher education regulator, the Commission for University Education, wants professional bodies barred from accrediting graduates in key professions and wants to take over the role, to avoid frequent stand-offs between the associations and universities.
Student discontent in Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire
The beginning of the year in West Africa's Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire has been disrupted by student protests and strikes.
Turkey and Sudan announce higher education initiatives
Wagdy Sawahel
Turkey and Sudan have unveiled a higher education cooperation plan that includes setting up a joint institution, networking among universities in the two countries and mutual recognition of degrees aimed at enhancing student and academic mobility.
Danish boost for research and PhDs
The University of Ghana has been awarded DKK9 million (US$1.4 million) in funding under the second phase of the Danish Building Stronger Universities programme – a partnership between universities in developing countries and in Denmark.
UK initiative to enhance Africa’s research capacity
Munyaradzi Makoni
Britain’s Institute of Development Studies will select nine African universities over two years to participate in a new programme to boost the research and teaching practices of academics working in agriculture, health and the environment. The British government is funding the scheme with a £2 million (US$3 million) grant.
HE embraces Kiswahili to boost regional integration
Reuben Kyama and Eric Kabeera
Rwandan universities have embarked on an ambitious programme to teach Kiswahili, East Africa’s lingua franca, to enable the country’s populace to tap into regional integration.
Global Commentary
Competition can generate innovation and change
Sean Gallagher
Great competition between universities need not be negative or clash with academic values. Rather, it can provoke innovation and new thinking.
Government support needed to attract foreign students
Artemios G Voyiatzis
Greek universities are looking to broaden what they offer to international students in the wake of the financial crisis, but they need more support from government on issues such as student visas.
Vigorous promotion needed to lure foreign students
Veena Bhalla and Krishnapratap B Powar
Given the growth in domestic student numbers, the percentage of international students is very small, particularly at the postgraduate level, and most are from Asia and Africa. More needs to be done to encourage greater student mobility to India.
World Blog
Canada and China’s legacy of cooperation
Grace Karram Stephenson
A long-running partnership between Canadian and Chinese universities offers a glimmer of hope for collaboration in a world full of global tension and protests.
World Round-up
Universities to launch foreign student recruitment hub
Russia Beyond the Headlines
Government to cut higher education enrolment by 35%
Focus Taiwan
Reduced cuts offer fails to win support for deregulation
The Sydney Morning Herald
Record numbers of women going to university
The Independent
‘Nature’ publisher to merge with Springer
Times Higher Education
Universities ramp up offers to lowest tier
The Australian
Multimillion rand grant scheme for black universities
Mail & Guardian
Communist Party orders Marxism course for universities
South China Morning Post
Politically active professors face dismissal
Daily News Egypt
Task force seeks science reform at Muslim universities
Sex differences in academia
The Economist
Quality of European research ‘threatened by cuts’
Worrying fall in students from key overseas markets
Herald Scotland
Africa Features
Top academics well paid, new generation falling behind
Karen MacGregor
South Africa’s senior academics are better rewarded than comparable staff in the public and private sectors, and they are relatively better paid than lower-ranked lecturers, a study by the vice-chancellors' association Higher Education South Africa has revealed. This is good news for retaining senior staff but bad news for building the next generation of academics.
Young university’s rapid growth despite austerity
Munyaradzi Makoni
In three years the State University of Zanzibar has doubled its student intake, albeit from a low base – from 1,224 in 2011 to 2,489 in 2014. In so doing it has bust the myth that the small island of 1.3 million off the coast of Tanzania cannot support more than one university.
Special Report
In this second special report on terrorism, University World News writers investigate the ways that higher education institutions around the world are developing methods to counter terrorism and de-radicalise young would-be terrorists.
Lecturers and students oppose Boko Haram
Tunde Fatunde
The continual conquest and annexation of sections of north-east Nigeria by the Islamic sect Boko Haram is cause for growing concern in the nation’s universities. The country’s sovereignty is under threat, especially where the sect has proclaimed, in areas under its military control, the imposition of a ‘caliphate’ with implementation of Sharia law.
Universities search for answers to terrorists
Jan Petter Myklebust
Terrorism is not a new development in a world that has experienced far worse acts than those that have occurred in recent times. Universities around the globe have responded by devoting more resources to exploring the reasons and finding answers to how terrorism might be constrained.
Countering new forms of violent extremism
Hamed El-Sa’id
The terrorist attacks in Paris and Verviers in eastern Belgium represent part of a new shift in the world of terrorism and an increasing global trend. Terrorism today is carried out mostly by a small number of home-grown individuals, often friends and relatives, where a high level of secrecy and trust is maintained.
Universities’ role in understanding terrorism
Yossi Mekelberg
There seems to be a widespread sense that the phenomenon of terrorism presents one of the largest threats our societies currently face. This is, indisputably, a very significant challenge, but we need to address it in conjunction with the wider phenomenon of radicalisation, mainly of young people.
Students fear backlash after Paris attacks
Michael Gardner
Concern is mounting among overseas students at a build-up of blanket hostility towards foreigners following the terrorist attacks in Paris. Politicians fear that far-right movements could cash in on the sentiments developing after the murders.
Protecting the nation from terrorism
Geoff Maslen
As a result of heightened concerns about terrorist threats of attacks within Australia, increasing numbers of universities have established research centres focused on global terrorism and how it might be combated. Several universities have this year also begun offering undergraduate and postgraduate courses in this field, with one running an online bachelor of social science in security and counter-terrorism that it says “will give you the training to work as a security and counter-terrorism specialist”.
Violence and terror endemic in society
Makki Marseilles
Throughout his term of office Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has moved towards more extreme, right-wing positions. Seeing him stand shoulder to shoulder with other world leaders – many of whom are, if not initiators, at least supporters of violence and terror in their own countries – before the huge demonstration in Paris following the murder of the Charlie Hebdo journalists would have made those victims turn in their graves.
Turning terrorists around – Here's how
Clarke Jones
To meet the Islamic State threat at home, the Australian government must focus on developing ways to disengage and even de-radicalise supporters and returning foreign fighters – recognising that the latter is the most challenging. And, contrary to popular belief, it isn’t all about religious extremism.
Global News
Labour to replace tuition fees with a graduate tax?
Brendan O'Malley
Britain’s Labour Opposition believes the current system of charging tuition fees is unfair and unsustainable and, if elected, could opt instead for a graduate tax.
Election offers universities new hope
Makki Marseilles
Obama eyes legacy with free higher education plan
Mary Beth Marklein
Boost graduate numbers to tackle unemployment – OECD
Wachira Kigotho
Sweeping funding cuts will hit elite institutes
Suchitra Behal
Students and lecturers help unseat Rajapaksa regime
Dinesh De Alwis
Global Features
Berkeley to build a global campus, 10 miles from home
Madeline Will, The Chronicle of Higher Education
The University of California at Berkeley plans to open a global campus, but it intends to do so without going very far from home. Under the plan, partner universities from around the world would set up shop at a new outpost just 10 miles from Berkeley’s main campus.

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