09 December 2016 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
Advanced Search
News
GERMANY
Lecturer warns of threat to research transparency
A German finance expert has warned that the country’s federal states could be entering a “dangerous race to the bottom” regarding legislation on transparency in cooperation between industry and higher education. Christian Kreiss of Aalen University believes that cooperation agreements should be publicly accessible in order to guarantee academic freedom.
CHINA
Exam rules herald major shake-up of business education
Strict new rules were scheduled to come into force last week for business schools in China recruiting Chinese students for MBA and short Executive MBA courses, with institutions no longer allowed to set their own entrance exams – part of the country’s drive to root out substandard programmes with low or non-existent barriers to entry.
EUROPE
EC announces members of High Level Group on research
The European Commission, or EC, has selected its 12-member High Level Group on maximising the impact of European Union research and innovation programmes.
GLOBAL
China leads but India rises in new university ranking
Chinese higher education institutions dominate the Times Higher Education BRICS and Emerging Economies University Rankings 2017, published on Wednesday, taking six of the top 10 places, with Peking University coming top and Tsinghua University second. India comes second on the number of institutions included.
AFRICA
Gathering of ministers calls for more African PhDs
African science and education ministers have called for bold and urgent steps to increase the number of PhD holders produced on the continent every year, as well as the establishment of an African research chair initiative, and the development of mechanisms to harness research mobility on the continent.
RUSSIA
Internationalisation ‘could transform Russian science’
Russian science is characterised by very low rates of publication, citation and joint international authorship, relative to system and university size. But a vigorous internationalisation policy could kickstart its transformation, according to a new paper by Professor Simon Marginson, director of the Centre for Global Higher Education at the UCL Institute of Education.
SWEDEN
Government tables plans to strengthen research quality
The government has unveiled plans to strengthen the quality of research – by investing in more research time for existing staff and opening up routes into a research career, especially for women – in a bill presented to parliament last Monday. It includes a commitment to double the share of women professors to achieve gender parity by 2030.
GHANA
Graduate unemployment plays key role in elections
Benbella Akuffo Asare, a 24-year-old university graduate, has been looking for work as a teacher for over a year. He says he has applied for more than 500 jobs since graduating from the University of Education, Winneba in Ghana and finishing his mandatory one year of national service in 2015. Unemployment has become a cause for growing concern for many Ghanaians as they prepare to vote in presidential and parliamentary elections on 7 December.

UNITED STATES
Campuses weigh up tactics against student deportations
Following the election of Donald Trump with a pledge to eliminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy – which enables some undocumented students to stay on in the country for renewable intervals without fear of deportation – university leaders are pondering how far they can go to resist any policy change.
ALGERIA
Ministry launches e-masters degree project
The Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research has launched an e-masters degree on an experimental basis in five universities as part of an attempt to address the challenge of high graduate unemployment.
DENMARK
New government focuses on HE quality and employability
Improving the quality of higher education and research and the rate of transfer to work will have a prominent place in the programme of the new three-party coalition government, endorsed by the Queen of Denmark last Monday.
GLOBAL
Stanford University tops global employability ranking
Stanford University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology rank first and second in QS Quacquarelli Symonds’ first QS Graduate Employability Rankings, while China’s Tsinghua University takes third place. Universities with a strong STEM – science, technology, engineering and mathematics – focus, particularly those emphasising technology, rank highly.
EUROPE
13 universities land role in up to €1.6bn food project
Thirteen universities are part of a 50-institution consortium that has been chosen to set up EIT Food, a substantial new pan-European partnership bringing together leading businesses, universities and research organisations to “boost innovation, growth and job creation and put Europe at the centre of a global revolution in food”.
INDIA
Universities and students struggle in cash crisis
Universities have had to set up temporary arrangements to deal with the chaos caused by the government’s snap decision to withdraw higher denomination bank notes, leaving students unable to pay fees and having to queue for hours during exam season to get cash.
GHANA
HE vision to produce industry-ready graduates
Ghana has launched its national higher education vision to promote the development of industry-ready graduates, scientific research and innovation in efforts to make universities more responsive to the country’s development needs in the 21st century, and make Ghana a major hub for higher education in the West African region.
EGYPT
Student union elections put on hold pending new rules
The holding of student union elections, scheduled for November, has been thrown into doubt after the country’s higher education authorities announced a delay in the polls until relevant rules are worked out.
HONG KONG
Universities’ non-local students ‘not diverse enough’
Hong Kong universities are not diverse enough, according to a just-released Hong Kong government Audit Commission report. It notes that students from mainland China made up 76% of non-local students at Hong Kong’s public universities in the past academic year.
UNITED KINGDOM
£2bn increase in research spending per year announced
The Chancellor of the Exchequer announced a “major increase” in research and development funding with a commitment to spend £2 billion (US$2.5 billion) per year more by 2020-21. But critics say the increase falls way short of the recommended target of 3% of gross domestic product.
SOUTH AFRICA
Free higher education – President appeals for patience
President Jacob Zuma has appealed for patience while the national fees commission he set up to investigate the feasibility of fee-free higher education concludes its inquiry. The appeal follows the release last week of the commission’s interim report, criticised by the opposition Democratic Alliance as “a slap in the face” for students.
SOUTH KOREA
University told to revoke place of Park aide’s daughter
The Ministry of Education has said the admission of Chung Yoo-ra, the daughter of President Park Geun-hye’s confidante Choi Soon-Sil, to the prestigious Ewha Womans University should be revoked after an investigation found the university had manipulated admissions rules to give Chung a place.
UNITED STATES
Watch list of 'anti-American' professors stirs fears
The establishment of a watch list "to expose and document college professors who discriminate against conservative students, promote anti-American values, and advance leftist propaganda in the classroom" seems a chilling development to many professors in the current political climate.
DENMARK
Do more to lure and keep international academics – DEA
Universities should be more ambitious in their strategies to attract and retain international staff, including expanding the use of English as a working language at universities, according to a government-funded report by the think tank, DEA. Otherwise they risk losing recruited talent to other countries.
EUROPE
European students given grants to support refugees
The European Students' Union has launched a Small Grants Programme to help its member student unions contribute to securing the refugees’ fundamental human rights and stimulating a sense of belonging to the national and European community.
UNITED STATES
International students top one million for first time
The number of international students enrolled in United States colleges and universities topped one million last year for the first time, an annual tally says. And US students earning academic credit abroad continues to climb, though at a much slower rate of growth and in far fewer numbers.
GLOBAL
Mobility of African students – Europe losing ground
Students from Africa account for more than one in 10 students worldwide studying abroad – a mobility rate twice as high as the global average – with about a fifth from North Africa, and more than a half from countries where French is spoken.