NEWS – Our correspondents worldwide report
Brexit breakthrough helps universities in short term
Universities have welcomed the breakthrough in negotiations between the United Kingdom government and the European Union on Brexit, which will end uncertainty for 46,000 EU citizens currently working in UK universities and is set to keep the UK in Horizon 2020 and Erasmus+ until 2020.
Leading institutions forced to drop ‘university’ title
Prominent institutions of higher education in India, including many private and specialised institutions, that enjoyed so-called ‘deemed university’ status can no longer use the word 'university' in their names, sparking fears it could affect their reputation, international rankings and future student recruitment.
US decision on Jerusalem fuels student unrest
United States President Donald Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem – or Al-Quds in Arabic – as the capital of Israel and transfer the American embassy there from Tel Aviv has led to numerous angry protests by students in Egypt's universities and beyond.
Marketisation of HE is failing students – Audit report
The United Kingdom's National Audit Office has published a damning report on the effectiveness of the government’s increasing reliance in recent years on delivering higher education using market mechanisms, particularly student choice, to improve quality and value for money, and reduce social inequity.
Doubts emerge over UK university’s South Korean campus
Aimee Chung and Yojana Sharma
Doubts have emerged over the University of Aberdeen’s plans to set up what would be the first United Kingdom university campus in South Korea after differences of opinion with the Korean authorities over the kind of courses to be offered.
AI, digital technology is changing innovation landscape
The rise of artificial intelligence or AI, data analytics and other digital technologies is changing the innovation landscape in a way more conducive to university-industry research and development collaborations than in the past, according to Tan Chorh Chuan, outgoing president of the National University of Singapore.
LERU universities contribute €100 billion to economy
Jan Petter Myklebust and Brendan O’Malley
Investment in leading research universities generates a substantial return for the wider economy, and the 23 members of the League of European Research Universities or LERU are contributing almost €100 billion (US$117 billion) to the European economy and 1.3 million jobs, according to a new study.
Government pulls plan to fight social inequity in HE
Jan Petter Myklebust
Minister of Higher Education and Research Helene Hellmark Knutsson has withdrawn government proposals to make universities work harder to combat social inequity in access to higher education following strong opposition from within the sector, particularly over government's failure to commit to providing new resources.
Cairo University sacks five academics over Islamist link
Egypt’s main state-run institution Cairo University has expelled five lecturers for having links with the now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, the latest in a clampdown on Islamist academics in the Arab country.
New research strategy has an eye on the Nobel Prize
Jan Petter Myklebust
The government’s new research and innovation strategy aims to put Denmark among the world’s elite research nations. It includes the establishment of a ‘Nobel Pact’ to develop Nobel Prize qualifying researchers but also seeks to gear funding to promote high quality research and better research careers.
No arrests in Makerere fraud case as 69 degrees recalled
Ugandan police have made no arrests among the 88 suspects – some of them alleged to be politicians and business people – implicated in the altering or forging of marks at Makerere University, months after university officials reported the offences.
New government will face pressure for new deal for HE
With talks over a new German government dragging on, heads of higher education and research bodies and institutions are demanding that the coming administration tackle the growing imbalance between core and project funding for universities and the need for substantial increases of funding.
Russia unveils plans for nuclear education centre
Russian state atomic energy corporation Rosatom is assisting Zambia in establishing a nuclear education centre that will enhance inter-university cooperation by training qualified personnel to work in the field of nuclear technology.
Shouldn’t global universities follow global principles?
As universities cease being national institutions, there is a duty to ensure not just that research and teaching are world class, but that principles of educational equality and justice and issues such as widening participation are properly internationalised as well.
The future of work – and of management education
We all know that the world of work is changing. That means a need for a change in management education with a focus on lifelong learning, on the human side of management and ethics – plus a need to innovate in how it is delivered.
Did the USSR top the US on gender equality in science?
The Soviet Union was ahead of other countries on many measures of gender equality and it is often assumed that there was also greater gender equality in academia in the USSR than in the United States, but new research on publication rates challenges this idea.
'Organisational development' could transform universities
Massive destructive student protests highlight the fact that South African universities are facing a stalemate with regard to the institutional transformation they require. It’s time to stop the piecemeal approach and adopt the kind of strategic focus employed by business.
How can universities remain international post-Brexit?
Brexit presents significant challenges for universities in the United Kingdom. The best way forward is through promoting the UK as open and welcoming to international students and diversifying the student base, since more than half of incoming students come from just 10 countries.
Improving access and equity in internationalisation
Hans de Wit and Elspeth Jones
With degree mobility only reaching a small elite, and too little focus on faculty and student perspectives on internationalisation in the curriculum, we run the risk of perpetuating the kind of elitism that nationalists decry. A more inclusive approach to internationalisation is needed.
Why China wants ‘Western-style’ liberal arts education
As Duke University in the United States prepares to set up an undergraduate liberal arts degree at its campus in Kunshan, China, and with other proposals by foreign universities for such programmes in the offing, China’s motivations for setting up ‘experimental’ liberal arts degrees are coming under scrutiny.
Challenges of promoting social change via fellowships
María Elena Hurtado
The Ford Foundation’s postgraduate fellows from Brazil, Guatemala and México are struggling against the legacy of slavery, exploitation of indigenous people and the United States’ interference in Latin American affairs, to bring change to their communities – and in some contexts higher education itself is seen as a tool of oppression.
Relaunch of faculty heralds new era in journalism
The Somali National University has relaunched its faculty of journalism and communication – 26 years after its closure in 1991. The faculty will meet the need for formally trained media workers in the country’s growing number of media outlets, and provide expert training for journalists working in a politically sensitive context and facing ongoing conflict with Islamist insurgents al-Shabaab and other armed gangs.
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