University World News Global Edition
11 October 2015 Issue 385 Register to receive our free e-newspaper by email each week Advanced Search
Emerging economies are investing in innovation but progress takes time

In Commentary, Anand Kulkarni and Angel Calderon unpack the Global Innovation Index and examine how middle income economies, which are increasingly prioritising innovation, are faring and how they might progress. From Finland, Cecilia Pellosniemi gives good advice on how to prevent an academic culture shock among international students when they experience different teaching and learning practices in a foreign land. And Ivan Sterligov, Alfiya Enikeeva and Victor Trofimov discuss the tendency for Russians to publish more in the physical science disciplines, while some former Soviet states have shifted the disciplinary structure of their publication output. In our World Blog, Rajani Naidoo urges universities to work together to promote global wellbeing, despite the growing competition between universities for global positional advantage. In Features, Elizia Volkmann describes the dire situation for higher education in Libya, where civil war has closed some universities and impeded operations in others. And Nic Mitchell reports on a new study looking at the rise of English-language foundation programmes for international students.
In a Special Report, Yojana Sharma reports on a conference on access and equity in higher education held in Malaysia last week, organised by the Global Access to Post-Secondary Education initiative.
Brendan O’Malley – Managing Editor
NEWS: Our correspondents worldwide report
Mary Beth Marklein

US research universities dominate US News & World Report's second annual global higher education rankings, and an expansion in the numbers of institutions included this year helped to catapult China into the number two slot, ahead of the United Kingdom and Germany.
Gilbert Nganga

When Amos Ngila, a second-year law student at Moi University in Kenya, phoned his father recently to update him on campus events, what he said was so shattering that his dad hung up. The news was that the law school had been closed down, there was an impending tuition fee increase and Ngila was yet to receive his student loan, more than a month into the semester.
Michael Gardner

The German Academic Exchange Service and the Indian University Grants Commission are stepping up cooperation. A new higher education partnership programme has been signed during a visit by a German delegation headed by Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Australia’s universities are calling for a bold new research and innovation investment strategy, arguing that it is vital to the economic transformation that the government and opposition parties both say the country must make.
Ashraf Khaled

A ban by Cairo University, Egypt’s biggest public higher education institution, on women lecturers wearing the full-face veil – the niqab – has sparked controversy among academics in this mostly Muslim country.
Jan Petter Myklebust

The scientific impact of Danish publications linked to the European Sixth and Seventh Framework Programmes is “outstanding”, according to a ministry report.
Karen MacGregor

South African President Jacob Zuma on Tuesday announced the creation of a national task team “to explore solutions to short-term student funding challenges”. The decision was taken during a meeting with vice-chancellors and university council leaders increasingly concerned about issues such as student violence, politicisation of campuses and insufficient financial aid.
Jeffrey R Young, The Chronicle of Higher Education

MOOCs may soon become a prominent factor in admissions decisions at selective colleges, after the Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced last week that it plans a pilot programme in which students who do well in its MOOCs will enhance their chances of admission to MIT's masters programme and be able to finish the degree in one semester instead of two.
Jane Marshall

The Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie, which promotes higher education and research in French-speaking universities throughout the world, has appointed a new director, Jean-Paul de Gaudemar.
Meeting the global challenge of building equitable knowledge economies was the theme of an international conference organised by the Global Access to Post-Secondary Education, or GAPS, initiative in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, last week. Yojana Sharma reports for University World News.
Yojana Sharma

Many countries are promoting rapid expansion of higher education, but the challenge is to ensure it is equitable and includes the marginalised populations, to prevent a widening income gap and ensuing social problems, delegates were told at a conference organised by the Global Access to Post-Secondary Education initiative, held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on 5-8 October.
Yojana Sharma

Inequity is rife in higher education across poor countries and rich, whatever the economic or political ideology. But finding a way to measure unequal participation in post-secondary education, even within countries, has so far proved elusive, the Global Access to Post-Secondary Education conference, in Kuala Lumpur, was told last Tuesday.
Yojana Sharma

University access for refugees has become a major challenge for countries in Asia, which like Europe, are seeing an influx of more educated and aspirant refugees.
Anand Kulkarni and Angel Calderon

The Global Innovation Index shows little movement at the top of the rankings. Although some emerging economies are making progress, more needs to be done to promote success, particularly in terms of creative outputs.
Cecilia Pellosniemi

International students come from different cultures of learning and it is important that their expectations of how they will be taught are prepared in advance.
Ivan Sterligov, Alfiya Enikeeva and Victor Trofimov

Russian academics tend to publish more in the sciences, particularly physical sciences, but not all the former Soviet states show similar tendencies.
Rajani Naidoo

The growth of competition between universities is making it difficult for universities to pull together to promote global wellbeing.
Elizia Volkmann

Recent weeks have seen some university students in Libya sit examinations. It is a sign that things may be improving after the worst 18 months in the history of higher education. The civil war that has been wracking the country has seen universities bombed. Some institutions have had to halt education, and operations have been impeded at others.
Nic Mitchell

A new study predicts growth in English-language foundation programmes for international students, particularly in continental Europe, which has seen the number of English-medium degrees triple in the last seven years, and warns of slowdowns in the number of students from China going to the United States, Japan and the United Kingdom.
Wachira Kigotho

Africa’s quest for scientific independence is likely to be a long journey on a bumpy road full of potholes, leading to who knows where, given that the continent has no culture of philanthropy and government spending on research and development is extremely low. That was a key message from scientists attending the launch forum of the Alliance for Accelerating Excellence in Science in Africa, held in Nairobi last month.
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A new study says the extraordinary scale of PhD fraud in Russia can be attributed to the reproduction of near-identical doctoral dissertations within universities, writes Jack Grove for Times Higher Education.

Many Canadian universities are seeing a sharp increase in the number of professors hired to primarily teach rather than research. While that may be good news for students, the change could threaten the mission of universities, writes Simona Chiose for The Globe and Mail.

Foreign universities crave access to India’s booming higher education market. Less well known is how some Indian institutions are venturing overseas, reports The Economist.

Human Rights Commission member Fadel al-Gharrawi said last Tuesday that the ISIS terrorist organisation has imposed its own curricula in all schools and universities in Nineveh province, ‫, reports Shafaq News.

After the mass shooting in Oregon on 1 October – the 45th school shooting in the US this year – that left nine dead, attention has focused on the state’s policy of allowing guns on college campuses, writes Scott Keyes for the Guardian.

Victoria University classes were to resume as normal on Thursday, after a bomb threat closed part of the Kelburn campus, writes Talia Shadwell for The bomb scare follows threats of violent action received by two other universities last week – the University of Otago's Dunedin campus and Massey University's Palmerston North campus.

Cyber attacks on Hong Kong universities are on the rise amid fresh fears that state-backed hackers are the main culprits, with one campus admitting that it is fighting an unprecedented number of daily intrusions, writes Danny Lee for the South China Morning Post.

A university in Russia’s Urals region has published 3,000 copies of a book targeting young people, Muslim clerics and civil servants, detailing the deceits used by Islamic State and describing the dangers that await the possible recruits to the terrorist group, reports RT.

Although the inability to levy fees means they receive less teaching funding per student than universities in England, which can charge fees of up to £9,000 (US$13,800) per year, Scottish universities are in rude health. Yet the abolition of fees has done surprisingly little to widen access to higher education, reports The Economist.

What have the prime minister of Iraq and the president of Iran got in common? Not much, you might think. However, the fact is they are among 55 current world leaders who have studied at a UK university before taking office, writes Richard Garner for The Independent.

A group of New York inmates have out-debated Harvard University's team – the top-ranked club in the world, reports the BBC.
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