NEWS – Our correspondents worldwide report
Plan S for open access is far too risky, say researchers
More than 700 researchers from across Europe have signed an open letter criticising Plan S, a European plan for open access that is supported by the European Union and some national funding agencies. The researchers say the plan is “unfair for the scientists involved and is too risky for science in general”.
International historian bows to right-wing pressure
Ramachandra Guha, the internationally renowned historian, who is a strong critic of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has reversed a decision to accept a teaching offer at Ahmedabad University after coming under pressure from right-wing group Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad.
Protesters demand more resources for public universities
María Elena Hurtado
Several thousand higher education students, teachers and administrative personnel plus trade unionists recently staged marches in Colombia’s largest cities asking for more resources for public universities, better conditions for student loans and more money for the agency responsible for science, technology and innovation.
Medical school scandal – Rejected students given a place
Professor Yukiko Hayashi, the newly appointed head of Tokyo Medical University, which has been tainted by a gender discrimination scandal, has agreed to accept students who had passed the entrance exam last year but were told they had not earned a place.
MPs demand target for international student growth
An All-Party Parliamentary Group has called on the government to set a clear and ambitious growth target for international student recruitment and offer a two-year post-study work visa to help make study in the United Kingdom more attractive.
Row over MEPs’ ‘Europe first’ stance on research funding
Jan Petter Myklebust and Brendan O'Malley
Fourteen European university networks have voiced joint concern over manoeuvring in the European Parliament which they say is “undermining the aims” of the next Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, Horizon Europe, including a push for a ‘Europe first’ approach to research funding.
After campus rapes, a national plan to tackle scourge
In the aftermath of close to 50 incidents of rape and sexual violence on South Africa’s campuses, the country’s president, Cyril Ramaphosa, will launch a national strategic plan to tackle gender-based violence.
Could divided Congress compromise on higher education?
Eric Kelderman, The Chronicle of Higher Education
Following the United States mid-term elections in which Democrats won control of the House of Representatives but not the Senate, what are the areas legislators from both parties could focus on if they really wanted to work together to rewrite the Higher Education Act?
Enhancing university partnerships in soft power drive
Japan is reaching out to build partnerships with African universities – a move seen as part of a broader strategy of higher education diplomacy or 'soft power' aimed at building regional alliances and partnerships to serve the country’s cultural and economic agendas.
Early-career researchers in new German collaboration
Early-career researchers from 30 Australian universities will partner with their German counterparts on 71 different projects under a joint Australia-Germany research cooperation scheme, via which Australia leverages more funds than it does through the United States and the United Kingdom.
Harness science for growth, African leaders are told
Africa's success relies on its capability to harness its demographic dividend by equipping its youth with the technological and innovative skills which, in the longer term, will be a catalyst for economic growth, a recent African Union gathering of 10 heads of state heard.
From sharing common values to free trade bargaining chip
Higher education is becoming a bargaining chip as the United Kingdom considers its future outside the European Union. The British government’s proposal to treat it as a sweetener for free trade deals is an idea that is likely to persist whatever Brexit deal is agreed.
NAFTA renegotiation signals little change for HE so far
The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement appears to maintain the status quo for now where higher education is concerned, but things could change with the inauguration of Mexico’s new left-wing president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, and US President Donald Trump’s approach to migration.
The need for innovation in research methodology
Providing high-quality research methodology programmes in higher education is a global concern. Despite their critical role in enhancing the quality of postgraduate education, institutions of higher education continue to under-resource and undermine the value of research methodology programmes.
The making of university rankings – Has anything changed?
Despite the growth in rankings and some changes to methodology, fundamentally nothing has really changed over the years in terms of ensuring they better depict the quality of universities and their activities. Rankings are inherently able to tell only a part of a much wider story.
Future still uncertain for Saudi students in Canada
Grace Karram Stephenson
Saudi students in Canada are still scrambling to find an alternative destination country after the Saudi government told all students to leave the country over a tweet about women’s rights activists. The situation shows how vulnerable international mobility now is to changing politics.
Universities must lead on Sustainable Development Goals
Lennart Levi and Bo Rothstein
Universities have a crucial role to play in preparing the leaders of the future, ensuring they have the right critical-ethical skills and systems-thinking approach to be able to implement the Sustainable Development Goals and transform the world for the better.
The dangerous rise of neo-liberal universities
A new school of thought is emerging in East Africa which challenges the rise of the academic capitalism inspired by rabid marketisation of university programmes and challenges the idea of the current university system as an effective vehicle for social and economic development.
Decolonisation – Towards a more 'convivial' notion of HE
“When I went to school I had to divorce myself from my African identity. It was irrelevant – I had to relearn everything. That was my experience at school – it was even more so when I came to university.” This observation from a South African student poignantly illustrated the North-South divide lying at the heart of a seminar on decolonising the curriculum, held at the University of Johannesburg.
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