Issue No:0006 18 November 2007
HE Events Diary

University World News is the first high quality, truly international newspaper dedicated to providing news, features and commentary on higher education issues around the globe. Our network of dozens of correspondents include many of the world's most experienced higher education journalists.

RosieRiveter Newsletter
Women in higher education are the focus of this week's special report. Women outnumber men on campus, but are still under represented in certain fields and in senior roles.

Terrorism? Now you can study it. See the Uni Lateral section.

SPECIAL REPORT: Women in higher education

In many countries around the world, women are now the dominant s ex on university campuses. But while they might outnumber male students, women are still under-represented in certain ‘typically masculine’ fields while within the academic community they have a long way to go to gain equal representation at senior levels. Our correspondents report.

SWEDEN: Changing tack to attract women
Ard Jongsma
After years of failed special efforts to increase the number of female teaching staff, Sweden’s Chalmers University of Technology has embraced a new strategy to achieve a better gender balance: it has decided to stop making special efforts. Completely.
Full report on the University World News site

GREECE: Women woefully under-represented
Makki Marseilles
Little more than one in four Greek university teachers are women, a survey has found. This confirms the degree of gender inequality in Greece’s education industry.
Full report on the University World News site

EU: Slow-down along the career path
Alan Osborn
Women are more numerous and more successful than men at first degree level in European Union universities. But once they graduate, women fall back at each step of the typical academic career.
Full report on the University World News site

SOUTH AFRICA: A staffing pyramid with men at the top
Karen MacGregor
South Africa has strong gender equity legislation and policies, says “all the right things” and women’s representation in the workplace compares favourably with other countries. But researchers say it is disappointing that women fill only one in four senior university positions.
Full report on the University World News site

FRANCE: Slow progress towards parity
Jane Marshall
A young generation of women is making progress up the academic ladder in France, but men still monopolise senior posts in universities.
Full report on the University World News site

UK: Promotion ladder too hard to climb
Diane Spencer
Women in British universities hit the proverbial glass ceiling at the senior level. Latest figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency show that women account for 42% of lecturers and researchers but only 16.5% make it to professorial level and just 16% reach the top job of vice-chancellor or rector.
Full report on the University World News website

CANADA: Women in science find negative equations
Philip Fine
For every four men who have earned a science and engineering doctorate in Canada, only one woman holds that same degree. Laval Univerity’s Nadia Ghazzali, who holds a chair that studies the issue and tries to reverse the numbers, has been looking at what is at play in the stagnating numbers.
Full report on the University World News website

AUSTRALIA: Helping women to aim high
Adrienne Jones
One Australian university stands out in the way it encourages women on its staff to aim high – while helping them achieve their goals and their promotions.
Full report on the University World News website


Australia: No longer the second s ex
Geoff Maslen
More girls than boys finish secondary school in Australia, more go on to university, more complete their degrees and now more are enrolled in postgraduate studies. An extraordinary transformation has occurred between the genders. But does this threaten the future of the male s ex?
Full report on the University World News site

UK: Gender equity in low-income countries
Research into gender equality in higher education in low-income countries has shown some astonishing patterns, reports id21, an organisation communicating development research. A study by the UK Department for International Development (DfID) uncovered problems such as s exual harassment and gender violence, barriers to access, and women staff being excluded from promotion and professional development.
Summary on the University World News site

SPAIN: Gender equity elusive
Although they have made significant progress, women in academe continue to face persistent barriers to professional equality, experts from around the world heard at the 6th International Conference on Higher Education and Research, held at the University of Málaga. In an article on a conference theme, ‘Advancing gender equity’, Education International points to a number of equity studies underway.
Summary on the University World News site

NEWS: Our journalists worldwide report

The anniversary of the great student riots of 40 years ago will be remembered and even celebrated next year. Meantime, students in a number of countries are out on the streets.

FRANCE: Students protest against new law
Jane Marshall
Student protests against the French government’s university reforms and lack of funding are spreading throughout France. Several thousand protesters demonstrated in towns around the country and closed 20 universities.
Full report on the University World News website

GREECE: Revolting students attack education cuts
Makki Marselles
University students across Greece are supporting striking school pupils who have occupied more than 500 schools. Thousands of others are refusing to enter their classrooms.
Full report on the University World News site

PAKISTAN: Student protests build
The steady rumbling of dissent on university campuses across Pakistan is an ominous development for the country's military regime, reports the Christian Science Monitor. Student activists in Pakistan have a history of effecting dramatic political change.
Summary on the University World News site


GERMANY: A new passage to India
Michael Gardner
Germany’s Education and Science Ministry has announced a new €4.3 million ($6.3 million) a year package to enable German students and academics to gain more experience in India. The ‘new passage to India’ follows a four-day visit by Chancellor Angela Merkel to the Asian country, which received extensive press coverage and was hailed a considerable success.
Full report on the University World News site

UK-AFRICA: Greater collaboration urged between Africa and Britain
Tony Tysome
Collaboration between academics in Africa and Britain would be vastly improved by a far greater understanding of the difficulties faced by staff in African universities, a new report concludes.
Full report on the University World News site

UK: Funding cuts hit the Open University
Diane Spencer
The Open University is set to lose millions in funding if the Government presses ahead with plans to change its spending policy on students. And thousands of part-time mature students will be left without funding from 2008.
Full report on the University World News website

SPAIN: Witchcraft popular in academe
Paul Rigg
Witchcraft as an academic subject has never been as popular as it is today, says Spanish historian Dr Maria Tausiet. Forums regularly take place at university level and students are increasingly choosing it as a course option.
Full report on the University World News website

UNI-LATERAL: Off-beat university stories

Australia: A degree in terrorism
Geoff Maslen
Australia has one the world’s most stringent set of laws against terrorism. Now, Murdoch University in the Western Australian capital of Perth is offering a bachelor of arts in security, terrorism and counter-terrorism.
Full report on the University World News site

US: Northwestern wins vegetarian title
More than 10,000 people have spoken and Northwestern University has been voted the most vegetarian-friendly university in the United States, in this year’s contest sponsored by peta2, the big youth animal rights organisation.
Summary on the University World News site

US: S ex sting professor not doing research
A University of Massachusetts Medical School professor who claimed he was conducting research on infectious diseases during his arrest in a p rostitution sting, actually probably was not, his institution says. The Boston Globe reports.
Summary on the University World News site


US: Costs and benefits of world class universities
“Everyone wants a world-class university. No country feels it can do without one. The problem is that no one knows what a world class university is, and no one has figured out how to get one,” writes Philip G Altbach in the journal International Higher Education. Not that this has stopped many institutions from calling themselves ‘world class’.
Summary on the University World News site

US: Survey of sprouting research parks
A survey by the US Association of University Research Parks (AURP) has confirmed that parks help to invigorate business and the local economy, create jobs and foster collaboration between industry and academics. Research parks employ 125,000 scientists and business is booming – around 750 companies have been set up at 59 parks in the past five years. But there are challenges, including with commerc ialising technology, diversifying companies and making them profitable.
Summary on the University World News site

CHILE: Social responsibility in universities
In 2001 the project ‘Universidad Construye País’ (University Builds Country) was launched in Chile, reports the Global University Network for Innovation (GUNI). Its aim was to carry out coordinated, joint social responsibility activities in the country’s universities. One of the people involved, Catholic University of Temuco rector Mónica Jiménez de la Jara, wrote an article analysing development of the project and its conceptual roots.
Article on the GUNI site


INDIA: Government boosts HE funding
Higher and technical education is to receive Rs840 billion (US$21.4 billion) in the Indian government’s 11th Five Year Plan, according to the Planning commission. There are to be major changes to higher education, and 30 news universities, reports The Times of India.
Summary on the University World News site

UK: OECD to measure university teaching
Working out what students and taxpayers get for the money they spend on universities is a tricky business, reports The Economist. Now the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development is planning to make the task a bit easier, by producing the first international comparison of how successfully universities teach.
Summary on the University World News site

UK: Universities should be greener
With a single medium-sized British university responsible for more than 12,000 tonnes of carbon emissions a year, the need for academics to do more than just study the problem of climate change was raised last week by the University and College Union, reports Education Guardian.
Summary on the University World News site

US: New survey shows foreign student growth
Enrolments of international students increased this Autumn at more than half of 700 US campuses that responded to a just-released survey, reports AScribe newswire. The survey indicates that declines in foreign student enrolments are being reversed.
Summary on the University World News site

US: Barring of South African scholar challenged
The legal challenge against the denial of a US visa to leading South African scholar, Adam Habib, has been renewed, reports the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). The ACLU has challenged the ban by the Departments of State and Homeland Security, who claim that Habib is “engaged in t errorist activities”, saying their accusation has no basis.
Summary on the University World News site

US: Universities forced to act against piracy
New federal legislation says universities must agree to provide not just deterrents but also ‘alternatives’ to peer-to-peer piracy, such as paying monthly subscription fees to the music industry for their students – or risk losing all financial aid for their students, reports CNet News.
Summary on the University World News site

MALAYSIA: Universities drop in global rankings
The 2007 rankings published by the Times Higher Education Supplement served as another wake-up call for a higher education sector that is yet to buck the downward trend of its universities in world rankings, reports the Malaysian National News Agency Bernama.
Summary on the University World News site

SOUTH AFRICA: Higher learning saving scheme launched
A savings scheme for higher education, aimed at encouraging South Africans to save money for post-school education, has been launched by Minister of Education Naledi Pandor. The Fundisa Fund aims to tackle both the country’s shills shortage and the notorious inability of its citizens to save money, reports
Summary on the University World News site
Copyright University World News 2007