01 August 2014 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
US: Public sector research produces valuable drugs
New research finds that a surprising number of valuable new drugs and vaccines approved in the United States have arisen wholly from research funded by the public sector, writes Amanda Gardner for Bloomberg Businessweek.
CHINA: Hong Kong gears up for four-year degree
Universities in Hong Kong are counting down towards one of the most significant transformations ever attempted in the territory's higher education sector, and the logistics are daunting: thousands of extra students, hundreds of new lecturers, realms of new curricula to write and hours of additional courses to fill, writes Liz Gooch for The New York Times.
US: Evacuated students did not want to leave Egypt
Study abroad staff evacuating students from Egypt last week all noticed a trend: many students did not want to leave, writes Sam Petulla for Inside Higher Ed. Were it up to them, they would still be watching the events from dorm rooftops, talking to local activists about chasing down police and scrambling to collect souvenirs.
US: Academic defies threats after taunts by anchorman
Seventy eight-year-old leftwing academic Frances Fox Piven is the latest hate figure for Fox News host Glenn Beck and his legion of fans, writes Paul Harris for The Observer. While she has decided to shrug off the inevitable death threats that have followed, she is well aware of the problem. "I don't know if I am scared, but I am worried," she said as she sat in a bar on Manhattan's Upper West Side.
US: Slight rise in college donations in 2010
America's colleges and universities received charitable contributions of $28 billion in 2010, an increase of 0.5% from the previous year, according to the annual survey by the Council for Aid to Education, writes Tamar Lewin for The New York Times.
SCOTLAND: University suspends vice-chancellor
A Scottish university has taken the unusual step of suspending its highly regarded principal following a dispute over his role and the future direction of the institution, writes Andrew Denholm for The Herald Scotland.
SRI LANKA: Private sector invited to fund research
The government will give income tax concessions to private sector companies that invest in research at local state universities in Sri Lanka, reports Kelum Bandara for the Daily Mirror.
KENYA: Noose tightens on bogus colleges operators
People who operate bogus colleges risk three years in jail or a fine of Sh1 million (US$12,323) as the government initiates measures to weed out institutions offering fake or substandard certificates, writes Benjamin Muindi for The Nation.
KENYA: Job data to determine university grading
Universities will soon be evaluated on how their graduates are employed or create employment opportunities, writes Benjamin Muindi for The Nation.
UK: University cuts 'send wrong message on economy'
Paul Marshall, head of the 1994 Group of research universities, which includes Durham, York and St Andrews, said slashing £940 million (US$1.5 billion) from higher education funding by July 2012 will send out "exactly the wrong message" on the economy, writes Nick Collins for The Telegraph.
UK: Top universities announce partnership
Two leading universities have announced their intention to work more closely together to meet the challenges of the future, writes Hannah Richardson for BBC News. Both are insisting it is not a merger.
ZIMBABWE: Scramble for university places
Students who passed the 2010 Advanced Level public examinations face a daunting task in securing enrolment at the country's universities this year, reports Fortious Nhambura for The Herald. About 27,000 students sat for A-Levels last year and only about a fifth of them can be accommodated at state universities.
THAILAND: Universities face admissions uncertainty
Many universities are facing crises in their direct admission systems, as many students who passed have not reported for enrolment, writes Wannapa Khaopa for The Nation. To cope with the worsening problem, the Council of University Presidents of Thailand will hold a meeting next weekend to find out the proper proportions of direct and central university admissions.
TANZANIA: Colleges unite to offer doctorates
Three colleges have teamed up to award doctoral degrees to ease the problem of lack of such training in Tanzania's higher education institutions, writes Mkinga Mkinga for The Citizen.
US: Obama throws weight behind higher education
President Barack Obama pledged support to re-establish America as the global leader in higher education in his State of the Union address last week, reports The Huffington Post. The president decried higher education budget cuts, which have become all the more common as states try to balance their coffers. "Cutting the deficit by gutting our investments in innovation and education is like lightening an overloaded airplane by removing its engine," he said.
INDIA: Huge funding hike proposed to meet promises
The human resource development ministry is pitching for a near 100% hike in higher education funding under the 2011-12 union budget to meet a slew of promises it is running out of time to implement, writes Charu Sudan Kasturi for the Hindustan Times.
NETHERLANDS: Government firm on higher fees
Dutch Prime minister Mark Rutte has no plan to amend the government's decision to cut spending on higher education, he said after a recent cabinet meeting, reports Dutch News. "I am not going to give the impression that the plans will change dramatically," he is quoted as saying in the Telegraaf after a massive demonstration by students in The Hague.
BELARUS: Varsities fee hike defended as global trend
Universities in Belarus will be raising tuition fees in keeping with the global trend, reports Belarus News. The hike was announced by Education Minister Syarhey Maskevich in Minsk last Tuesday.
UK: Vice-chancellors' pay hike prompts row
More than 950 university staff, including all vice-chancellors, were paid more than the British prime minister, an 8% increase on the year before, write Tom Rowley and Graeme Paton for The Daily Telegraph.
EUROPE: EC moves to cut red tape for research funding
The European Commission has taken steps to simplify EU funding for research and innovation to cut costs and attract more participants, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), reports EurActiv.com.
PAKISTAN: Varsity tensions reflect intractable feuds
Last semester ended ominously on the campus of one of Pakistan's largest universities, with a flurry of clashes involving armed student organisations, a professors' strike against violence, cancelled exams and a lunchtime bombing, writes Karin Brulliard for The Washington Post.
MALAYSIA: Ministry calls for student parliaments
If the new academic calendar indicated that 2011 would be full of surprises, Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin's New Year's address did little to change the notion. The minister's call for universities to establish students' parliaments highlighted the ministry's commitment to come good on last year's amendments to the Universities and University Colleges Act, writes Richard Lim for The Star.
IRELAND: Lecturers protest bid to scrap tenure
Over 200 university and institute of technology lecturers met in Dublin last Saturday to protest against the implementation of the Croke Park agreement in tertiary institutions. The group is seeking to protect the right of academics to permanency and tenure until retirement age. They said this "bedrock on which academic freedom rests" was under threat, reports The Irish Times.
UGANDA: Nation plots to reap from education export
As Uganda solidifies plans to become a regional education hub, the Uganda Exports Promotion Board (UEPB) has started discussions with 20 universities on how to package and market Uganda's higher education for export, writes David Mugabe for New Vision.
US: Tuition bargains fade at public universities
For bargain-hunting families, state colleges and universities supported by tax money have long been a haven from the high cost of private education. But tuition bargains are fading as the nation's public universities undergo a profound shift, accelerated by the recession. In most states, it is now tuition payments not state appropriations that cover most of the budget, writes Tamar Lewin for The New York Times.