28 April 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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KENYA
New admissions body to boost enrolment equity
Kenya has moved to reform the way students are admitted to universities by launching a new body that will equitably place learners in public and private universities as well as colleges.
GHANA
Academics vow to fight national research fund
Ghana’s government has gone ahead and set up a committee to draw up modalities for a proposed national research fund to support the activities of academics – even though lecturers have vowed to fight the fund because it would scrap current allowances.
EUROPE
HE should get lion’s share in post-2015 education
With the deadline for the UNESCO 'Education for All' goals now just two years away, a consensus is emerging that post-2015 global efforts to expand education should focus on the tertiary sector.
NIGERIA
Government increases higher education budget
Nigeria’s government has allocated 10.7% of this year’s total budget to education, up from 8.7% last year. The recent six-month strike by academics in public universities is seen as largely responsible for the phenomenal hike – the first time that the central government has summoned up the political courage to provide such high funding for the education sector.
GLOBAL
Inter-university platform for Middle East, North Africa
Countries in the Middle East and North Africa are planning to set up an inter-university collaborative platform in an attempt to strengthen the capacity of higher education managers and reinforce partnerships among universities.
TUNISIA
Plans for science-business city, and new university
Tunisia is planning to set up a science and business city including a ‘world university’ as part of its efforts to tackle higher education challenges, stem the brain drain, boost university-industry linkage and fight graduate unemployment.
KENYA
New vessel to boost marine research
Kenya has upped the ante on marine research with the launch of a vessel in the Indian Ocean. The Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute will deploy the 56-metre RV Zeeleeuw to undertake research in a bid to stem the loss of at least US$117 million a year in illegal and unregulated fishing.
GLOBAL
International HE associations call for global equity
Twenty-four international education organisations from across the world – including the giants in America and Europe and groups from Mexico and Japan, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America – gathered in South Africa last week for a first inclusive Global Dialogue. They forged a declaration that stressed mutual benefit and development and a more equitable and ethical global higher education agenda.
EGYPT
Sharp rise in student protests – Report
Universities in Egypt have witnessed a remarkable upsurge in student protests since the start of the academic year in September, in response to education issues and in support of the country’s first elected civilian president – former professor Mohamed Morsi – who was ousted by the military last July.
NIGERIA
Relief as academics suspend five-month strike
Students and parents across Nigeria have welcomed the news that the Academic Staff Union of Universities has called off its five-month strike. Pressures on President Goodluck Jonathan persuaded him to meet some of the lecturer demands – and academics had also come under immense public pressure to reopen campuses.
KENYA
Two students killed in protests, universities close
Two Kenyan universities will not hold end-of-semester examinations ahead of the Christmas break after they were shut down following protests that left two students dead. The student riots were both linked to the examinations.
NIGERIA
UK scraps visa bond for ‘high risk’ Nigerian students
The university community in Nigeria has welcomed the scrapping by the British government of a controversial proposed £3,000 (US$4,900) security visa bond for ‘high risk’ foreign visitors, including international students from Nigeria.
KENYA
Civil service reforms delay higher education projects
Kenya’s higher education sector is feeling the pinch of a new government policy to temporarily freeze employment and appointments in state bodies.
AFRICA
Kuwait to help boost higher education in Africa
Kuwait has launched a US$1 million annual award for research in Africa, announced at the third African Arab Summit held under the theme "Partners in Development and Investment" in Kuwait from 19-20 November. And a Kuwaiti charity plans to establish a university in Malawi.
NIGERIA
President leads talks to end four-month academic strike
The four-month strike in Nigeria’s public universities may end soon, following the intervention of President Goodluck Jonathan. He decided to lead the government team in negotiations with academics, in an effort to find practical solutions to the industrial action.
KENYA
Research boosted by multi-million dollar projects
Kenya’s profile as a research hub has received a major boost with two mega research centres that are expected to generate hundreds of innovations. And the government is planning to double its research funding within two years.
GLOBAL
BRICS think tanks council meets to shape strategy
The BRICS Think Tanks Council, comprising representatives from the emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, met near Stellenbosch in South Africa last week to review plans for the body’s operation.
CAMEROON
Medical school bans spark anger
A decision to ban 15 medical schools in Cameroon from training doctors has sparked anger – although it has been welcomed by the country’s medical profession.
EGYPT
Islamist seminary in turmoil as students protest
Thousands of students at Al-Azhar University, Egypt's huge Islamic seminary, have held rallies in support of ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi for the second consecutive week amid accusations from the institution’s administrators that the students have been engaged in acts of violence and vandalism. Dozens of students have been arrested.
AFRICA
World Bank centres of excellence to be named soon
Phase one of the Africa Higher Education Centers of Excellence initiative, being sponsored by the World Bank to the tune of US$158 million, is expected to kick off in the third week of November when the identities of universities that have been selected to host the centres will be made public.
GLOBAL
US-Libya higher education task force on the cards
The United States and Libya have agreed to set up a higher education task force that will work to strengthen Libya’s educational capacity, provide information about study abroad to Libyan students, and expand scholarships and exchange opportunities.
KENYA
Policy protects courses, mandates of upgraded colleges
Kenya has formally allowed universities to take over tertiary colleges in a new policy framework. But the upgraded institutions must retain their original courses, programmes and mandates, says the policy announced last Thursday by cabinet.
GHANA
University facilities insufficient to meet high demand
Ghana’s public universities are facing a boom in applications, but do not have sufficient facilities to meet growing demand that has been exacerbated by an influx of students from neighbouring countries and a double cohort leaving school this year.
GLOBAL
Oldest university network turns 100, launches campaign
The Association of Commonwealth Universities celebrated its 100th anniversary with a three-day conference at the University of London last week – and looked to the future with a campaign called “The World Beyond 2015: Is higher education ready?”
GLOBAL
World Bank, Coursera to take MOOCs to developing world
Developing countries worldwide are to benefit from an agreement signed last Tuesday by the World Bank Group and Coursera, a leading provider of MOOCs – massive open online courses. The collaboration aims to help meet the demand for solutions-oriented learning on pressing issues in targeted countries.