Also: Alternative agiculture: Researcher uses snail slime for cough syrup
23 March 2023  Issue No: 398
Africa Top Stories
PHOTOTo what extent does higher education in Sub-Saharan Africa promote the public good? In their exploration of the public good role of universities, researchers in a special edition of the Journal of Higher Education in Africa touched on colonialism, commercialisation, elitism and corruption as obstacles.
In order to professionalise technical and vocational education and training or TVET college lecturers, South Africa needs to have a set of professional standards specifically for TVET practitioners, according to a research report which investigated the professionalisation of lecturers.
Over the past decade, academic freedom has declined in more than 22 countries, including India, China, Mexico, the United Kingdom and the United States, according to the Academic Freedom Index: Update 2023, which claims to be the ‘first comprehensive overview of academic freedom worldwide’.
Africa News
PHOTOUniversities in Africa must train a pipeline of interdisciplinary ocean scientists with the knowledge, skills and expertise to meet the growing needs of the Blue Economy and to tackle challenges emerging from global warming as well as overfishing.
PHOTOWhen most people see snail slime, “Eew!” is usually the thought that runs through their minds. Others might even flinch at the sight of a snail near them. When it comes to Dr Paul Kinoti, however, snails might have just earned him international recognition among trendsetters in research.
Africa Commentary
PHOTOThe government of Kenya has rapidly expanded university education, both public and private, in response to demand. However, this rapid expansion has been supported by a cost-sharing financing model, which according to some scholars contradicts the concept of higher education as a public good.
Academic Publishing
PHOTOTechnology has made it fairly easy to launch an academic journal these days. But the literature on scholarly publishing in Africa is replete with the numerous challenges to sustain journals. There are lessons to learn from the International Journal of African Higher Education, which has just received recognition from Scopus.
Africa Features
PHOTOImagine joining a university, spending thousands of Kenyan shillings, and logging countless hours with the hope of one day securing a certificate that will earn you an employment opportunity. Now, imagine getting the same certificate without having to spend all that money and any time in school.
Top Africa Stories from Last Week
PHOTODespite a lot of local data, there is a dearth of accessible African datasets and challenges around local languages. However, broadband connectivity, 5G and the internet of things are spreading and will make data collection for powerful AI analytics in education in Africa possible.
Special Report Series: AI and Higher Education
PHOTOThis is part of a weekly University World News special report series on ‘AI and higher education’. The focus is on how universities are engaging with ChatGPT and other generative artificial intelligence tools. The articles from academics and our journalists around the world are exploring developments and university work in AI that have implications for higher education institutions and systems, students and staff, and teaching, learning and research.
Global Commentary
PHOTOSuppression of freedom of speech and free elections are acknowledged as warning signs of democratic erosion. It is time for us to recognise attacks on academic freedom in a similar fashion and strengthen understandings of academic freedom as a foundational element of democracy.
World Blog
PHOTOShort-term changes in research and publishing-related policies in universities and long-term changes to the education system more broadly are needed in Pakistan to produce research that not only has the promise of global impact but is connected to and usable by communities.
Global Features
PHOTOMichael Ignatieff, former vice-chancellor of the Central European University or CEU, says the way CEU was forced out of Hungary by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is serving as a script for today’s culture war on universities in Florida and Governor Ron DeSantis’s re-election last fall and presidential ambitions for 2024.
World Round-up
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