Also: In peril in Afghanistan – Remarkable gains for women and higher education
19 September 2021  Issue No: 660
Top Stories
PHOTOAre universities leaders or followers or intermediators and what are the implications for democracy? There are several variables that matter, including political geography. A snapshot of interactions of national politics and policies with universities may help to assess their roles and peer into their futures.
The United States’ withdrawal from Afghanistan need not have been as chaotic as it was and the betrayal of promises to so many Afghans, including those involved in higher education, will reverberate for years. In this article a scholar who until recently worked in Afghanistan on university development, unravels the full extent of the tragedy that has unfolded.
A report on inclusion and diversity in higher education was launched this month, intending to feed into discussions by policy-makers and experts preparing for a meeting of ministers of education from Asia and Europe later this year. The ministers are expected to adopt a new strategy for the decade ahead, taking into account impacts of COVID-19 on education goals.
PHOTOUniversities in emerging nations should be judged differently from higher education in the developed world, especially in terms of global engagement and internationalisation, says Dr Fernando León García, leader of CETYS University in Mexico, who has been elected president of the International Association of University Presidents.
Coronavirus Crisis and HE
PHOTOThe National Tertiary Education Union launched a week of action as a study it commissioned revealed that a shocking 40,000 tertiary education staff across Australia – nearly one in five – have lost their jobs during the pandemic. And, says the study: “Job losses are getting worse, not better.” Higher education has been hit harder by COVID-19 than any other industry.
PHOTOThe end of the collaboration between Yale University in the United States and the National University of Singapore has come under parliamentary scrutiny – over reasons for closing the Yale-NUS liberal arts college, and the way the August closure announcement was handled.
World Blog
PHOTOTo further a culture of democracy through education, we need to revise our understanding of what learning is for, that does not ignore its ethical dimension. The Council of Europe has developed a Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture that defines 20 competences around values, attitudes, skills and knowledge, and critical understanding.
PHOTOThere are fears that the impacts of the pandemic on nursery and school education will mean higher education will be less of a priority for international aid in the years to come. But it would be short-sighted not to embed higher education in the post-COVID-19 global development agenda.
PHOTOCiting the impacts of climate change, Harvard University President Lawrence S Bacow announced last week that Harvard Management Company, which runs the university’s US$42 billion endowment – the largest such fund in the world – would divest from oil and gas companies. The move follows more than a decade of effort by groups such as Divest Harvard.
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