23 March 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
JAPAN
Fresh probe into university post-retirement job scandal
Japan’s Ministry of Education is in the hot seat over revelations that it lobbied universities to hire its retiring officials, a practice known as amakudari or ‘descent from heaven’. Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is trying to manage the crisis by commissioning a government-wide investigation and promising to act on the findings, writes Jeff Kingston for Asia Times.
VIETNAM
Investors need $45 million to set up foreign university
The draft decree on international cooperation in education from the Ministry of Education and Training says investors must have at least VND1 trillion (US$45 million) in capital to set up a university in Vietnam, reports VietNamNet Bridge.
SOUTH AFRICA
Graduate tax ruled out as universities get extra R5bn
Treasury appears to have put the nail in the coffin of a graduate tax as Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan last week announced an additional R5 billion (US$388 million) in funding for universities‚ in addition to the R32 billion announced in last year's budget‚ to be made available by 2019, writes Bianca Capazorio for Sunday Times Business.
UNITED STATES
Universities reduce carbon emissions
Across 377 universities in the United States, carbon emissions per square foot have declined by 8% since 2007, according to a new report from Sightlines and the University of New Hampshire Sustainability Institute, writes Emma Degrandi for The Daily Campus.
UNITED KINGDOM
Universities admit 'almost illiterate' students – Survey
Universities are admitting students who are “almost illiterate”, lecturers warn as they complain that dropping entry requirements has led to a generation of undergraduates who cannot read, write or speak proper English, writes Camilla Turner for The Telegraph.
KENYA
University lecturer strike continues as talks collapse
Negotiations to end the lecturers' strike collapsed after the government declined to accept demands, write Faith Matete and Lewis Nyaundi for The Star
TAIWAN
Decline in university students from China
The number of short-term university students from China has declined in Taiwan this academic year in what some fear is retaliation by Beijing against a president who takes a guarded view toward relations, writes Ralph Jennings for Voice of America.
FRANCE
Calais ‘Jungle’ camp refugees attend French university
A group of 80 refugees from France’s ‘Jungle’ camp in the northern port city of Calais have been selected to attend university as part of an initiative to help them earn a degree in preparation for life in their new host country, reports France24.
UNITED KINGDOM
Universities urged to tackle antisemitism on campus
Universities are being urged to act swiftly to tackle antisemitism on campuses after a series of incidents in recent weeks – including Holocaust denial leaflets, fascist stickers and swastikas etched on and around campuses – which have fuelled anxiety among Jewish students, writes Sally Weale for the Guardian.
SOUTH AFRICA-UNITED STATES
Early warning system for students in academic trouble
Academics at Georgia State University in Atlanta have devised a computerised system that can flag a student who needs academic support or advice, perhaps long before the student is aware. One of the major benefits of the system might be to address racial achievement gaps, writes John Bohannon for Science.
FRANCE
Auditors criticise science super-campus near Paris
France’s government auditor has taken a sharp swipe at efforts to develop a science super-campus near Paris that, by 2020, was supposed to rival the world's top campus universities, such as America’s Massachusetts Institute of Technology, writes Barbara Casassus for Nature.
UNITED KINGDOM
Legal academics urge PM to cancel Trump visit
British Prime Minister Theresa May has been urged by 250 legal academics to cancel Donald Trump’s state visit and scale back Britain’s support for the United States until he reverses his positions on immigration, refugees, torture, climate change and judicial independence, write Rowena Mason and Jessica Elgot for the Guardian.
UNITED KINGDOM
More than nine in 10 universities restrict free speech
More than nine in 10 universities in the United Kingdom are restrictive of free speech, according to a new report that raises concerns over the issue of censorship on campuses, writes Rachael Pells for the Independent.
PAKISTAN
Campus violence rising across the country
Campus violence is on the rise in universities across Pakistan. More than a dozen clashes have been reported during a six-month period between student wings of various religious, political and ethnic parties in the universities of Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, writes Riazul Haq for The Express Tribune.
GLOBAL
Dalai Lama invite by US-Indian chancellor angers China
India will face serious consequences if its overseas citizens meddle in Chinese affairs by courting and promoting Tibetan leader the Dalai Lama, a Chinese newspaper has said, continuing the recent trend of demonising India in a section of state-controlled media in China, writes Sutirtho Patranobis for Hindustan Times.
KENYA
Students gives state deadline to end lecturer strike
University student leaders in Kenya have given the government a deadline to deal with a lecturer strike or face student unrest, writes Emmanuel Wanjala for The Star.
AUSTRALIA
International student completion rates remain high
The number of international students completing their studies at Australian universities and non-university higher education institutions has remained steady for the fourth consecutive year, according to a recent report on higher education from the Department of Education and Training, reports The PIE News.
SOUTH AFRICA
Minister calls arson attacks at universities 'barbaric'
Higher Education and Training Minister Dr Blade Nzimande has called on communities to help authorities track down and bring to book criminals responsible for arson attacks at universities, writes Raahil Sain for African News Agency.
CZECH REPUBLIC
Young women have higher education levels than men
Women's education levels have increased in the Czech Republic, as more than one-third of women aged 25 to 34, but only a quarter of men in the same age group, are university graduates, reports CTK.
CHINA
Universities lagging in race for donations
A recent donation of US$115 million by billionaires Chen Tianqiao and Chrissy Luo Qianqian, the founders of internet game giant Shanda, to the California Institute of Technology for brain research has drawn criticism in China, writes Alice Yan for South China Morning Post.
VIETNAM
Unemployed graduates ‘still at acceptable level’
An education official in Vietnam said the number of university graduates who are jobless must not discourage students from pursuing higher education, reports VietNamNet Bridge.
IRELAND
Universities turn a blind eye to disability
A new report claims that visually impaired students are being failed by Ireland’s education system and are 50% less likely to go to college than their classmates, writes Aoife Finneran for The Irish Sun.
INDONESIA
Ministry urges private higher institutions to merge
Out of 4,455 higher education institutions in Indonesia, more than 3,200 are private and many of them are not run effectively – which is why the Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education is urging them to merge, reports the Jakarta Globe.
PHILIPPINES
Economists reject full higher education tuition subsidy
Economic managers are opposing proposals to fully subsidise tuition in state universities and colleges, saying it would not be beneficial to the poor and would be a financial drain for the government, writes Czeriza Valencia for The Philippine Star.
COSTA RICA-SOUTH KOREA
University president seeks exchanges in the sciences
The University of Costa Rica has been stepping up its efforts to expand cooperation with Korean universities and institutions, especially in the sciences, writes Chung Hyun-chae for The Korea Times.