Intentional differentiation is essential for African universities
28 April 2022  Issue No: 357
Africa Top Stories
PHOTOThe African Scholars Initiative, a charity mentoring bright African students who intend to pursue higher education in Canada, has joined several other stakeholders concerned about a high study visa refusal rate for applicants from Africa. It has accused some immigration officials of racism, especially against students from Nigeria.
Scotland’s University of Edinburgh has vehemently distanced itself from Rector Debora Kayembe, who sparked outrage after alleging in a tweet that the 1994 genocide in Rwanda was orchestrated by Rwandan President Paul Kagame. The Democratic Republic of Congo-born rector has been accused of “flagrant” genocide denial.
The notion that there is a single ideal university must be resisted in favour of one that values a plurality of institutional types and promotes intentional differentiation in national higher education systems, according to Tade Aina, executive director of the Partnership for African Social and Governance Research, based in Nairobi, Kenya.
Africa News
PHOTOThere are 80 African universities in 10 countries featured in the Impact Rankings 2022 produced by Times Higher Education or THE World University Rankings. They are among 1,524 institutions from 110 countries ranked globally, based on their impacts on the 17 United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
Climate Change
PHOTOAfrican cities should be responsive to community needs and sensitive to climate change impact. Universities, researchers and think tanks can play a role in imagining what cities on the continent need to look like in the future, said Dr Debra Roberts, co-chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Working Group II.
Africa Commentary
PHOTOAssuming the position of vice-chancellor at United States International University Africa confirmed what I already suspected: the financial models of many African universities were not just broken, but faced an unmitigated disaster that, if not threatening their survival, undermined their quality.
PHOTOUbuntuNet Alliance Chief Executive Professor Madara Ogot talks to University World News about projects like the African Open Science Platform that are helping to make the research that is being done on the continent more visible to the rest of the world.
Africa Student View
PHOTOGovernment-sponsored students in Rwanda have called for an increase in their living allowance following a sharp increase in the market price of almost every commodity that has left many Rwandans struggling. The students who receive support under the Ubudehe programme come from poor families.
Africa Features
PHOTOAll Marion Namukose ever wanted to do was to plant her fruit farm, process her oranges, brand them and sell them. But the entrepreneur had found attaining her goal rather ‘easier said than done’ – until she attended a university programme in 2018 that showed her how.
Top Africa Stories from Last Week
PHOTOIf they are not to be condemned to irrelevance, universities in Africa must strengthen their research and teaching and adopt a proactive stance in responding to the institutional and development demands of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, according to Paul Zeleza, academic, higher education commentator and former vice-chancellor.
Global Commentary
PHOTOStaying ‘woke’ should become a continuous task for everyone in the university, but the challenge is how we can treat one another respectfully without the debate losing its bite. A legal scholar and former university president shares some thoughts on how this might work.
World Blog
PHOTOThe existence of memoranda of understanding entered into before the pandemic to govern the terms of international exchanges, visits and collaborations between higher education institutions begs the question: do they need to be updated in a post-COVID world or thrown out altogether?
Global Features
PHOTOAn advanced virtual reality system which gives students access to different virtual learning environments in which they can examine problems, collect data, collaborate and design solutions offers a unique way to teach climate change and further the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
World Round-up
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