University World News Global Edition
15 November 2015 Issue 390 Register to receive our free e-newspaper by email each week Advanced Search
The massive scale of the refugee crisis demands an appropriate response

In our World Blog this week, Hans de Wit says it is time for substantial concrete actions to provide access to higher education for Syrian refugees as education is at the heart of a long-term solution to the crisis.
In Commentary Jeremy Rappleye and Edward Vickers contend that Japan is overlooking the importance of building stronger ties with other Asian countries in its educational internationalisation efforts. With the national elections in Myanmar now over, Roger Chao Jr sees an urgent need for the government to begin drafting a national higher education law and to consider international best practice with regard to the higher education governance system. Rachel Brown contends that the Global Innovation Exchange – the first outpost of a Chinese university in the United States – reflects a next step in China’s soft power strategy. And in the United States, Andrés Castro Samayoa, Marybeth Gasman and Paola ‘Lola’ Esmieu consider strategies to widen access to study abroad – to provide all students with the opportunity to cultivate a global mindset.
In Features, Jan Petter Myklebust looks at which institutions and regions have dominated in accessing European Research Council grants, following the release of a recent report.
In a Special Report, University World News highlights the findings of the UNESCO Science Report: Towards 2030 launched last week, including the fact reported by Wachira Kigotho that there has been a shift in global science from basic to applied research.
Brendan O’Malley – Managing Editor
The UNESCO Science Report: Towards 2030, launched last Tuesday by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, provides more country level information on the trends and developments in science, technology and innovation policy and governance than ever before. University World News highlights some of the report’s findings.
Wachira Kigotho

The focus of global science has radically shifted from basic research to applied research, with high-income countries cutting back on public spending while private sector funding has been maintained or increased, according to the latest UNESCO Science Report.
Nicola Jenvey

The number of researchers has risen by 21% to 7.8 million since 2007 with a corresponding explosion in scientific publications, according to the newly-released UNESCO Science Report: Towards 2030. But 72% of the world’s researchers can still be found in the European Union, China, Russia, the United States and Japan.
Nicola Jenvey

The long-standing blindspot created by scientists' dogged concentration on positivist science – emphasising empirical data and scientific methods to the exclusion of other methodology – may be ending, according to the UNESCO Science Report: Towards 2030.
Yojana Sharma

With Asia accounting for almost half the world’s economic output and 42% of global research and development spending, the region is emerging as a science powerhouse with some of the world’s most dynamic national science and technology programmes contributing to global research and innovation.
Wachira Kigotho

Africa’s research output rose to 33,300 publications last year, up from 21,000 in 2008, according to UNESCO Science Report: Towards 2030, published last Tuesday. Africa’s world share of publications jumped from 2% to 2.6%.
NEWS: Our correspondents worldwide report
Jan Petter Myklebust

The proportion of university budgets comprising basic funding should be increased and collegial influence on decision-making and recruitment should be reduced, to give university leaders greater freedom to prioritise spending and hire staff to meet strategic needs, a commission on higher education leadership has recommended.
Ashraf Khaled

Egypt’s first student elections since 2012 are to be held – but with restrictions imposed on candidacy that are being seen as aimed at excluding ‘dissident’ students. The polls are due to start on Monday 16 November and to run through December on campuses countrywide.
Maina Waruru

Some six weeks after being sent home by universities, more than 4,000 students remain excluded from their studies amid a bitter war over course accreditation between the Engineers Board of Kenya and the Commission for University Education. Nothing has yet come of an attempt to alter the law to strip professional bodies of accreditation powers.
Sharon Dell

The famously imprecise line between institutional autonomy and public accountability is under the spotlight in South Africa as Higher Education and Training Minister Dr Blade Nzimande prepares to amend the Higher Education Act in a process that will become public in the new year.
Brendan O'Malley

The member universities of the German Rectors’ Conference have launched a national initiative to oppose xenophobia in Germany, against a backdrop of the refugee crisis and a steeply rising number of incidents of verbal and physical racial attacks in recent months.
Nicola Jenvey

Only 8% of United States higher education institutions have guidelines specifying international work or experience as a consideration for faculty promotion and tenure decisions, according to a study by the American Council on Education.

The European Commission’s new Scientific Advice Mechanism was officially launched last week, with the announcement of the seven leading scientists who will form the first High Level Group of scientific advisors.
Jack Stripling, The Chronicle of Higher Education

Outrage over racial inequity at the University of Missouri came to a head last week, as the two most powerful men at the institution resigned under pressure from students, professors, deans, and football players threatening to boycott games.
Claire Shaw

University graduates who move overseas for more than six months will now have to pay back their student loans. Until now, graduates who moved abroad were under no obligation to repay their student debt while they lived in another country.
Jeremy Rappleye and Edward Vickers

Japanese students need to be given enhanced opportunities to study the languages, history and culture of other countries in Asia which they have too often taken for granted.
Roger Chao Jr

With the elections now over, Myanmar needs to focus on comprehensive higher education reform, starting with drafting a new higher education law and tackling its governance structure.
Rachel Brown

China’s new Global Innovation Exchange marks the first time a Chinese university has set up an offshoot in the United States.
Andrés Castro Samayoa, Marybeth Gasman and Paola ‘Lola’ Esmieu

All students need to have access to experiences that promote a global mindset, but few minority students in the US have studied abroad. How can this be changed?
Hans de Wit

The scale of the refugee crisis demands more than good intentions and small-scale actions. Education is at the heart of a long-term solution to Syria’s problems and we need to do much more.
Jan Petter Myklebust

After seven years, the European Research Council grant scheme has become a 'gold standard' for science in Europe, and the 'jewel in the crown' for 4,556 recipients in the Seventh Framework Programme (2007-13). The recently published report on its patterns and trends is a mine of useful information.
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A new government plan to create ‘world class’ universities in the coming decades could be undermined by the Communist Party's determination to keep a firm ideological grip over education, writes Li Jing for South China Morning Post.

The Department of Education unveiled a slate of executive actions it's taking to beef up accountability in the higher education accreditation system, which Education Secretary Arne Duncan said is filled with "watchdogs that don't bite", writes Lauren Camera for US News and World Report.

Trickery by editors to boost their journal impact factor means that the widely used metric “has now lost most of its credibility”, writes David Matthews for Times Higher Education.

Students acquiring degrees from foreign universities in a duration shorter than the one prescribed for such degrees in India will now find it easier to secure equivalence to and recognition of their qualification in the country, writes Vishwas Kothari for TNN.

The University of Colorado School of Medicine has announced that it is returning a US$1 million gift from Coca-Cola after it was revealed that the money had been used to establish an advocacy group that played down the link between soft drinks and obesity, writes Anahad O’Connor for The New York Times.

White British children are being left behind as they are the least likely of any ethnic group to go to university, a five-year study by the Institute for Fiscal Studies has revealed, writes Javier Espinoza for The Telegraph.

The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning will establish a special committee to foster university-level software education as part of its drive to produce more software specialists, writes Lee Min-hyung for The Korea Times.

The new national standards for universities have been described as being unattainable for the majority of higher education institutions, writes Kim Chi for VietNamNet Bridge.

Police in Turkey have fired rubber bullets and teargas to disperse demonstrating students who were protesting against how the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan uses the Council of Higher Education as an instrument of state control, reports PressTV.

An Australian university has handed back the 40,000-year-old bones of ‘Mungo Man’ – the oldest human remains found in Australia – to the ancestral Aboriginal owners who said “it is time for him to go home”, writes Jonathan Pearlman for The Telegraph.

Ten UK universities with endowments worth £115 million (US$175 million) are in the process of moving their money out of fossil fuels ahead of crunch United Nations climate change talks in Paris later this month, writes Emma Howard for the Guardian.

The Council for Higher Education unanimously approved a set of criteria for improving teaching quality, which all academic institutions in Israel will have to abide by, reports The Jerusalem Post.

Hundreds of Yale University students marched in protest last week as tensions boiled over in response to what they called the racial insensitivity of the university’s administration. The students’ frustration has been building for some time in response to a series of issues, but it was most recently sparked by a clash over potentially sensitive Halloween costumes, writes Justin Worland for Time.

A high-profile appointee to Lingnan University's council stormed out of one of his first events, a forum on academic freedom, after students swore as they questioned him, writes Chris Lau for South China Morning Post.

Dutch universities are getting around changes in the rules on temporary contracts by offering lecturers a fixed contract for one lecture a week plus a short-term contract for the rest of their work, reports Dutch News.
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