Also: Concern over turmoil in South Africa’s higher education department
1 July 2021  Issue No: 320
Africa Top Stories
PHOTOAfrican climate scientists and researchers face barriers and constraints, including limited funding, limited access to data and inadequate weather observation infrastructure. In response to these limitations, the recent African Climate Conference proposed a climate research for development initiative to enhance Africa’s perspectives on the global climate change agenda.
The World Health Organization and its COVAX partners are working with a South African consortium comprising Biovac, Afrigen Biologics and Vaccines, a network of universities and the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention to establish its first COVID-19 mRNA vaccine technology transfer hub.
Despite the appointment of three senior leaders, South Africa’s national Department of Higher Education and Training is in “tatters”. The turmoil, which allegedly includes tension between the minister and his head of department, is a source of considerable concern in the higher education sector.
Africa News
PHOTOMembers of an advisory council to the Ethiopian government have called on university leaders and academia from all over the world to reject “outdated and unfair colonial treaties” as grounds for settling the dispute over the controversial Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.
Africa Commentary
PHOTOThe University of Mauritius has shown that, by focusing on targets and working with the government and industry, universities can advance the Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs despite financial constraints. The role of data collection, management and research as universities pursue the SDGs will be discussed at the Association of African Universities conference from 5-8 July.
Student Blog
PHOTOSince its inception in 2005, Radio Salus at the University of Rwanda has offered practical training to interns and volunteers to become journalists. Its internships put theory into practice, help participants to pinpoint differences between university study and the world of work and prepare students to be confident job creators. Some of the beneficiaries stay on to become mentors.
Africa Features
PHOTOUnintended pregnancies remain a serious issue that keeps thousands of young women out of school and higher education institutions. According to figures from the Rwanda Ministry of Health, 17,849 cases of teen pregnancies were recorded in 2016, which decreased to 17,337 in 2017 and went up to 19,832 in 2018. In 2019, teen pregnancies increased to 23,628.
Global Commentary
PHOTOWhat is higher education’s role in a world of shifting international politics characterised by rising populism and authoritarianism and weak global governance. Is it to promote greater internationalism and decolonisation or to help police national borders, supporting the surveillance, settlement and retention of migrants?
World Blog
PHOTOTo address future health threats, and prepare future health professionals to implement a holistic approach and be more effective and innovative, we need to develop a One Health culture in higher education through increasing interdisciplinarity and embedding it in the culture of our institutions.
Global Features
PHOTOChina and the United States have kicked off a race for supremacy in global science and technology and some fear it could lead to an emerging division into two opposing science ‘blocs’, reminiscent of the military and economic divisions of the Cold War era.
World Round-up
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