NEWS – Our correspondents worldwide report
Push for jail terms over university admissions scandal
South Korea’s prestigious Ewha Womans University in Seoul – under the spotlight of investigations into a corruption scandal that led to the impeachment of the country’s former president Park Geun-hye in March – faces renewed scrutiny. State prosecutors are seeking a seven-year jail term for Park’s close friend Choi Soon-sil for facilitating her daughter’s admission to the university and for having her high school academic grades altered.
Universities too heavily reliant on foreign students
Of the more than 520,000 international students enrolled in Australian universities, colleges and schools this year, nearly one in three are from China. Of these, more than 50,000 are enrolled in the nation’s universities. Foreign students now contribute more than AU$5 billion (US$3.7 billion) annually to university incomes which amounted to AU$28 billion in 2015.
China student quota to Taiwan universities halved
The number of students from mainland China who will be allowed to study in Taiwan this year has been slashed, with implications particularly for Taiwan’s private universities which offer the majority of places available to students from mainland China.
Higher education – An antidote to Boko Haram
In the wake of a series of suicide bomb attacks this year on the University of Maiduguri by Islamic extremist terror group Boko Haram, academics have called for the government to revamp education and vocational training in order to discourage the recruitment of young men and women as cannon fodder by the militant extremist group.
International educators confront a new political reality
Karin Fischer, The Chronicle of Higher Education
The biggest buzz at last year’s conference of NAFSA: Association of International Educators was about a survey of prospective international students that showed nearly two out of three would reconsider studying in the United States if Donald Trump became president. Conference goers thought the findings scary. They also thought such a thing could never happen.
University governance debate rages on
Jan Petter Myklebust
Structural reform of Norwegian higher education has led to heated debates regarding the governance and leadership of universities. Now an intervention in the debate by an influential law professor, Jan Fridthjof Bernt, is adding fuel to the fire as he recommends a total overhaul of the governance structure at universities.
Student grant levels too low, survey finds
The Deutsches Studentenwerk – German Student Welfare Service – has called for an increase in federal government grant support for students in response to the findings of a survey by the Berlin-based Institute for Education and Socio-Economic Research and Consulting.
Calls to boost universities’ PhD science training capacity
Strengthening the capacity of East African universities to train PhD and post-doctoral academics in areas such as human nutritional sciences, agriculture, technology, engineering and mathematics is urgently needed to develop local scientific capacity and help the region to achieve its development goals.
First ‘Monument to an Anonymous Peer Reviewer’ unveiled
A Monument to an Anonymous Peer Reviewer – believed to be the world’s first – has been unveiled at top Russian institution the Higher School of Economics in Moscow. Two Nobel Prize winners and researchers across the world supported a crowdfunding campaign that enabled a “useless piece of concrete” to be transformed into an artwork.
Leading universities in an uncertain world
Kakha Shengelia, president of Caucasus University in Tbilisi, Georgia, takes over the three-year presidency of the International Association of University Presidents – often described as the global voice of higher education – at its 2017 conference in Vienna from 5-8 July. He spoke to University World News about what lies ahead for his presidency at a time of global political, economic and security uncertainty.
Greater curbs on academic freedom in 2017 – Report
Egyptian authorities have tightened restrictions on university lecturers and students this year as part of an ongoing state-led crackdown that started more than three years ago, a report by a rights group has shown.
Student vs army clashes paralyse Kashmir campuses
It was a typical day in April at Government Degree College Pulwama in Kashmir. Students were in class or outside enjoying the sunshine when an Indian army vehicle drove into the college, provoking spontaneous protests. Stones rained down on the vehicle and students shouting ‘free Kashmir’ slogans forced it to pull out. The protests spread to universities and colleges across the Kashmir valley, with hundreds of students injured.
Number of mobile students out of, and into, China soars
Of the five million international students studying higher education courses outside their own countries, one in four are from just one country: China. But now most Chinese studying abroad are returning home – the outbound-to-return ratio has risen to 82% over the past four years, compared to one in three returnees a decade earlier – and China is attracting hundreds of thousands of foreign students to its shores.
Don-turned-presidential hopeful vows to redeem HE
A Kenyan professor aspiring to become president in the country’s upcoming general election says, if elected, he will give priority to higher education and redeem the image of the Kenyan system.
The changing shape of global higher education geopolitics
Andrew Gunn and Michael Mintrom
The recent launch of the Asian Universities Alliance shows the scale of China’s geopolitical ambitions and can be seen as an innovative policy tool for advancing soft power. The alliance joins a range of activities that are relocating the epicentre of global higher education to Asia.
Tackling institutional racism in universities effectively
The concept of institutional racism may be a politically useful rallying cry to encourage organisations to reconsider their practices and take positive action to promote racial equality. But its value as an analytical tool diminishes when its definition is too broad.
Universities – Learning from society for society
The context of societies in developing countries must determine the mission and role of their universities. These cannot simply be borrowed or adopted from the Western world. They should be crafted on the basis of the needs and aspirations of the society where the university is located.
A rough but rewarding road to educating ethical leaders
Kajsa Hallberg Adu
At a private liberal arts college in Ghana’s eastern region, where engagement with ethics is embedded into the curriculum, a ‘new normal’ for the region’s businesses and universities is being forged.
Trump decision to leave Paris accord hurts US and world
Travis N Rieder, Anthony Janetos, Kevin Trenberth, Marina v N Whitman and Matthew Russell
President Donald Trump stunned the world on 1 June by announcing his intention to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord, a landmark global agreement to lower greenhouse gas emissions and minimise harm from climate change. Academics and scientists analyse what the move means for the planet, US businesses and the world’s poor.
GOING GLOBAL 2017
The British Council’s Going Global 2017 conference for leaders of international education was held in London recently. The theme was “Global cities: connecting talent, driving change”. In this second special report, University World News reports on some of the highlights.
Transnational education – A classification framework
Nearly 100 policy-makers and higher education experts from 30 countries contributed to a new classification framework and data collection guidelines for transnational education – released at Going Global 2017 in London – that will help countries gather data to inform policies, regulations and enrolment planning.
‘Triple helix’ international partnerships not always easy
With a raft of recent announcements of British university tie-ups with China, and a general eagerness by Chinese universities to link with Western institutions, it appears partnerships are easy to set up. But Chinese government support is not enough for successful ‘triple helix’ collaborations between foreign institutions and researchers and industry in China, the Going Global 2017 conference heard.
Transforming learning through student research
Inquiry is a natural human activity derived from a desire to make meaning and improve understanding of our world. An increase in higher education research – driven by expansion in student numbers and students engaging in varied research activities as part of their educational experience – will only help to transform learning.