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30 November 2014 Issue 0345 Register to receive our free e-newspaper by email each week Advanced Search
International students versus domestic demands – A balancing act

In World Blog, Brian Stoddart argues that any government able to balance growing international student demand with tricky domestic considerations will be onto a real winner.
In Commentary, Stephen Sterling contends that while the debate about sustainable development often ignores the importance of education – education also ignores its full role in sustainable development. James O’Meara calls for urgent action to reduce teacher attrition, in an effort to attain global education targets.
Jo Muller is cautiously optimistic that South Africa is edging closer to planned differentiation in higher education. Diana Jane Beech maintains that in the humanities and social sciences, the monograph – not journal articles – has become the passport for aspiring mobile researchers.
In Features, Yojana Sharma reports on a symposium in Malaysia at which research management experts agreed on the need to upgrade universities and research in Asia, as research and development moves East. Stephen Hoare describes a Siberian university’s efforts to become a player on the world stage, and Nic Mitchell outlines a new report on the growing reliance of English universities on international student recruitment from transnational education programmes delivered overseas.
Ahead of next week’s global conference of the Talloires Network of engaged universities, we investigate one of the themes – perspectives from the global South – and interview MasterCard Foundation president Reeta Roy about an initiative that supports universities to help graduates transition to the workforce.
Karen MacGregor – Global Editor
NEWS: Our correspondents worldwide report
Brendan O’Malley

Britain’s Coalition government is rushing through an anti-terrorism bill that would require universities to take action to stop students and staff from being drawn into terrorist activity.
Jan Petter Myklebust

The Norwegian government has backed down from a proposal to introduce tuition fees for students from outside Europe, instead reaching a deal with opposition parties to increase the budget next year for higher education institutions by NOK80.5 million (US$12 million).
Wachira Kigotho

Against the backdrop of the less understood world of colleges, diplomas, certificates and professional examinations, the 34 country members of the OECD have embarked on a major educational policy drive to popularise the importance of professional education and vocational skills.
Suvendrini Kakuchi

Collaboration between universities has become a key word in the evolution of Sustainable Development, a UNESCO programme launched a decade ago to strengthen public commitment to reduce global warming and the depletion of natural biodiversity.
Gilbert Nganga

Kenya is planning to set up at least 20 new public universities, as it seeks to devolve education to counties that currently have no institution of higher learning.
Lucy Hodges

Belarus is forming partnerships with countries around the world to offer distance learning courses, and thereby to modernise its economy and higher education system.
Shelagh McLoughlin

Two top British universities will join forces next week in a bid to become even more competitive on a global scale. University College London and the Institute of Education announced that they are merging from 2 December, a move that will create a new institution with more than 35,000 students.
Jan Petter Myklebust

Denmark’s Quality Commission has published its second report on the quality of university education. It calls on students to drop jobs and work full-time on their studies, and says that while Danish research is world-class, teaching at universities is not.
Wagdy Sawahel

African universities must forge partnerships with counterparts in industrialised nations and work to create and sustain entrepreneurship and enterprise development by equipping graduates with the skills needed to identify new business opportunities and to start up companies, or with the qualifications required by employers.
Karen MacGregor

Next year Mexico will mark 100 years of policies on university engagement, and this work is a key area of focus for higher education in Pakistan. In the developing world including South Africa, most students may be from low-income families – and so many universities are of themselves an engagement project in terms of social upliftment and agency. The often marginalised perspectives of universities in the global South will be highlighted at the Talloires Network Leaders Conference being held in Cape Town next week.

Reeta Roy is president of the Toronto-based MasterCard Foundation, which has assets of over US$3 billion and more than 35 partnerships with universities and other organisations, funding programmes in areas such as microfinance and youth learning. One is the Youth Economic Participation Initiative with the global Talloires Network of engaged universities, which supports initiatives that help graduates transition to the workforce. YOJANA SHARMA spoke to her before the Talloires Network Leaders Conference.
Yojana Sharma

Asian economies have surged ahead and demand for higher education from a rapidly growing middle-class has fuelled expansion. But the region’s universities and research need to upgrade to keep up with economic changes that include the global shift of industries, research and development to Asia, a regional symposium of research management experts heard.
Stephen Hoare

The first higher education institution east of the Urals, Tomsk State University was founded in 1878 to extend the Tsarist empire’s grasp on Siberia’s tribal lands. Today the challenge of globalisation has replaced the university’s mission to tame the wilderness. Russia and Siberia’s international isolation has to be overcome by transparency around quality.
Nic Mitchell

A number of English universities are increasingly reliant on recruiting international students through transnational education programmes, according to a new report from the Higher Education Funding Council for England. It says that around 34% of all international first-degree entrants transferred directly from United Kingdom transnational programmes delivered overseas in 2012-13.
Eric Kelderman and Rebecca Koenig, The Chronicle of Higher Education

Honour wasn’t enough last week at the University of Virginia. An article by the magazine Rolling Stone, detailing the brutal gang r ape of a freshman woman at a fraternity party in 2012, has blown a hole in the institution’s storied legacy as the genteel ‘academical village’ founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819.
Brian Stoddart

Higher education is an international business, but government policy does not make the most of all the possible advantages it can bring.
Stephen Sterling

The debate about sustainable development often ignores the importance of education – and education ignores its full role in sustainable development. How can the two be brought together?
James O’Meara

To meet the 2030 global goals for education, it is not enough to recruit more teachers. Targets need to be set to reduce the rate of teachers leaving the profession.
Jo Muller

There is a new sense of cautious optimism that South Africa is edging closer to planned differentiation in higher education. Scholars and planners are working with government to put flesh on the bones of a differentiation plan. How the government proceeds, and whether it will have sufficient political support to follow the charted path – is the great imponderable.
Diana Jane Beech

Academic publications can determine your future as an international researcher and if full international mobility is the ideal, then the monograph has to become the reality for aspiring mobile researchers.
Bernhard Streitwieser, The Conversation

Through its higher education system, the United States student population is slowly shedding an unfortunate image it may have once had of being rather parochial. The US continues to be the destination of choice for students worldwide, with international student enrolment growing by 8% last year, according to the Institute of International Education. But major challenges for US higher education remain – primarily fairness and access to opportunity.
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Iran's parliament has voted to approve President Hassan Rouhani's fifth candidate to head the higher education ministry, ending an ideological tussle over a cabinet post important to his pledge to liberalise life in the Islamic republic, writes Michelle Moghtader for Reuters.

Every country sends out students. What makes China different is that most of these bright minds have stayed away. Only a third have come back, according to the Ministry of Education – fewer by some counts. A study this year by a scholar at America’s Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education found that 85% of those who gained their doctorate in America in 2006 were still there in 2011, reports The Economist.

China's Ministry of Education and the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television have announced that they will support the “National Campus Movie Theatre Chain” by installing movie screens on university campuses across the nation within three to five years. The new university theatres will aid the dissemination of China's cultural heritage and soc ialist education to students, writes Lord Marin for Yibada.

Before he entered politics, Stephen Harper trained as an economist. It was perhaps prophetic that the Canadian prime minister decided to enter a field widely known as the ‘dismal science’: these days, his relationship with those practising most other types of science grows progressively more dismal by the day, writes Cynthia Macdonald for Times Higher Education.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will require grant recipients to make their research publicly available online – a multibillion-dollar boost to the open access movement, writes Carl Straumsheim for Inside Higher Ed.

The Ukrainian Ministry of Education and Science has created a draft programme on higher education envisioning a radical restructuring of the country's higher education system, bringing it closer to standards that exist in American higher learning institutions, reports Sputnik.

Turkey is planning to build 80 mosques on university campuses across the country, Mehmet Görmez, head of the Religious Affairs Directorate – Diyanet – has announced, reports Hurriyet Daily News.

The peak body representing Australia’s universities has escalated its campaign for substantial changes to be made to the federal government’s higher education reforms, writes Lauren Wilson for News.

Finnish universities are bending to the current government’s desire to introduce tuition fees for higher education students arriving from outside the European Union and European Economic Area. Students and youth organisations roundly condemn the move, seeing it as a threat to not only equal education, but also the national economy, reports YLE.

Shafiul Islam, a professor of sociology at Rajshahi University who led a push to ban students from wearing full-face veils at the institution in 2012 – stoking the wrath of Islamist hardliners – was attacked with a machete by unknown assailants outside his home on 15 November. He died from his injuries in hospital some hours later, reports Advocacy.
India’s government has withdrawn from parliament a bill aimed at creating an overarching body in higher education, subsuming existing regulatory bodies such as the University Grants Commission, All India Council for Technical Education and National Council for Teacher Education, reports The Hindu.

New statistics from the Department of Education reveal that after six years of austerity budgets, 67 academic staff in the university sector have salaries in excess of €200,000 (US$249,000), write John Drennan and Claire McCormack for The Independent.

New research by the agriculture and food development authority shows that agricultural education gives a far higher rate of return to the individual and the state than other post-secondary education, writes Alison Healy for The Irish Times.

Visits by Austrian academics to a European Union-sanctioned Iranian university with connections to illicit nuclear proliferation activities have drawn sharp criticism from a Vienna-based NGO, writes Benjamin Weinthal for The Jerusalem Post.

Edinburgh University – a member of the elite Russell Group – says it wants to ensure half of its places go to overseas students within a few years, writes Graeme Paton for The Telegraph.

The archive of celebrated Colombian novelist and Nobel laureate Gabriel Garcia Marquez has been acquired by the University of Texas – meaning that the critic of United States foreign policy is having his papers end up in a country he wasn't always too fond of, reports Associated Press.

Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe has been named ‘scholar of the century’ by the African Council for Distance Education, reports Eyewitness News.
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