16 January 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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KENYA
Qualifications authority bill goes to parliament
The government has drafted a bill seeking to form a Kenya Qualifications Authority, which will be charged with regulating and standardising all qualifications awarded by universities and colleges.
AFRICA
Five nations pledge support for science, engineering
Five African countries - Ethiopia, Mozambique, Rwanda, Senegal and Uganda - have committed to invest more in science, technology and engineering education to accelerate progress towards knowledge-based societies within a generation. Their pledge last Thursday followed a high-level forum in Kigali co-hosted by the World Bank and Rwandan government.
EGYPT
Leading university suspends two pro-Morsi lecturers
Two Egyptian university professors who worked as aides to Egypt's ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi have been suspended from duty for alleged violence and graft, in the latest crackdown on sympathisers of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood.
TUNISIA
Mobility partnership with Europe unveiled
Tunisia and the European Union have formally established a mobility partnership that, among other things, will help facilitate mutual recognition of qualifications, enhance the exchange of higher education information and experience, and foster the flow of researchers and students. There are 10 European countries involved in the partnership.
AFRICA
Denmark's research capacity scheme enters second phase
Seven universities in Africa and South Asia will share DKK100 million (US$18.6 million) over three years in the second phase of a Danish-funded programme to build research capacity in the global South.
AFRICA
Cape Verde joins the African Virtual University
Cape Verde has become the latest country to join the African Virtual University, a pan-African intergovernmental organisation aimed at increasing access to quality higher education through innovative use of information and communication technologies.
AFRICA
World Bank rolls out African centres of excellence
The World Bank continued rolling out its African centres of excellence initiative this month, meeting representatives of universities in Nigeria – the country won 10 of the 15 centres – to discuss logistics around how the funding will be disbursed. The project seeks to promote regional scientific specialisation to deliver quality training and research.
AFRICA
India boosts HE cooperation with North Africa
In an effort to expand its ‘Look Middle East’ policy, India has announced a number of initiatives to boost higher education cooperation with three major natural resources-rich North African countries – Morocco, Tunisia and Sudan.
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.