Sunday, 10 June 2012

University World News - Issue 0225

Demand for postgraduate training of international higher education leaders

In World Blog, Hans de Wit says the changing nature of international higher education requires new types of leadership, and training is needed for the next generation of managers. Simon Marginson writes in Commentary that Latin American universities face particular challenges in moving up the global rankings, and suggests alternatives for the region.
Responding to criticism of the Canadian Association of University Teachers’ censure warning against Balsillie School of International Affairs, CAUT Executive Director James L Turk argues that universities should not surrender independence over academic matters in order to secure funding. Piyushi Kotecha suggests strategies to revitalise higher education across Southern Africa, and in the United Kingdom Paulo Charles Pimentel Bótas contends that many academics need to revise their jaundiced view of international students as second class and only there as cash cows.
In Features, Alya Mishra reports on growing concern in India over the lack of research and innovation in universities. Sarah King Head looks at the new Global Research Council, which will foster collaboration between research funding agencies worldwide and establish principles to guide multinational research projects, and Jan Petter Myklebust uncovers a challenge by two Swedish students against fees charged under an Erasmus Mundus programme that has sparked international interest.
Karen MacGregor – Global Editor


New regulation allows foreign university collaboration
Alya Mishra

India’s higher education regulatory body has announced new rules that will allow only the top 500 globally ranked institutions to partner with leading Indian universities, as legislation to allow foreign institutions to set up branch campuses in India remains stalled in parliament.

Minister plans more ‘collegiate’ universities
Jane Marshall

France’s parliament will debate a new framework law for higher education in early 2013. While universities will retain autonomy, their governance will be radically reformed. An action plan aimed at cutting the high student first-degree failure rate will also be given priority.

New committee to drive higher education development
Adeagbo Oluwafemi

Southern African higher education ministers resolved to establish a technical committee to drive the implementation of policies aimed at developing higher education across the region, at an extraordinary ministerial meeting held in Johannesburg last week.

Espionage professor’s jail sentence sparks fears
Jan Petter Myklebust

A professor of international politics at Copenhagen University has been jailed for five months after being convicted of espionage for passing documents to Russian diplomats. The sentence imposed on Timo Kivimäki has raised fears over its implications for the conducting of research.

International call to stop assaults on academic freedom
Wagdy Sawahel

Seventeen human rights organisations and education groups have called on Iran to uphold the right to education and to immediately address the alarming state of academic freedom in the country.

Indian institutes of technology to open branch campus
Guillaume Gouges

Indian institutes of technology have announced the opening next year of a branch campus in Mauritius. The Indian Ocean island had sought the help of the prestigious institutes to set up a research-oriented academy of international standard.

Bank loans to drive development
Eugene Vorotnikov

Leading Russian universities, facing a lack of capital investment and plans to reduce state funding of higher education, are considering additional sources of finance for their activities, including bank borrowing.

Continued crackdown on foreign-linked institutions
Francis Yu

The Vietnamese government has continued a crackdown on unauthorised foreign-linked institutions operating in the country by blacklisting another seven colleges. The move follows the closure and fining of a number of foreign-affiliated institutions in the past six months.

Bid to improve foreign PhD students' rights rejected
Jan Petter Myklebust

An attempt to ease restrictions on foreign doctoral students from outside Europe remaining in Sweden after graduation, and to allow students the right to work during their PhD studies, was rejected by parliament last week.

New teaching graduates fail competency exam
María Elena Hurtado

A high failure rate in recently released test scores of primary school teachers has compounded the concern Chileans already feel about the state of public school education.


Soul searching as university-led research lags
Alya Mishra

Environment Minister Jayaram Ramesh, an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology – Bombay, sparked controversy last year when he said the elite government-funded institutes of technology and of management were excellent only because of the quality of students, not the quality of research or faculty.

Funding agencies establish Global Research Council
Sarah King Head

Last month 47 leaders of research funding agencies from 44 countries met at the headquarters of the National Science Foundation in Arlington, US, for a two-day summit of the newly minted Global Research Council.

Students challenge fees for Erasmus Mundus masters
Jan Petter Myklebust

Two Swedish students are challenging Uppsala University’s decision to charge domestic students tuition fees for a masters offered with seven European universities under the Erasmus Mundus programme. The issue has sparked international interest because a number of countries have introduced or raised fees either for international or for all students.

World Blog

Changing role of leadership in international education
Hans de Wit

Leadership and management in international higher education has received little attention. There is a new generation coming up that wants the experience necessary to do the job properly, but it will take time for them to move up the pipeline. In the meantime training courses are needed to plug the gap.


Improving Latin American universities' global ranking
Simon Marginson

Latin American universities are hampered from climbing up the global rankings by several factors, including the bias towards publication in English. A greater emphasis on regionalism could help, as could a regional ranking system similar to Europe’s U-Multirank.

Academic integrity depends on independence
James L Turk

Universities that badly need money to maintain their programmes cannot allow outside interests to shape what they do and whom they hire without losing the very integrity that makes them unique and valuable public institutions. The Balsillie School of International Affairs is a case in point.

Higher education trends, challenges and recommendations
Piyushi Kotecha

Southern African countries must urgently develop and implement higher education policies aimed at expanding student enrolments, strengthening quality and the qualifications of academics, at least doubling the production of postgraduates, developing research capability and changing how universities work including improving governance and planning.

Attitudes towards international students must change
Paulo Charles Pimentel Bótas

A major challenge for universities is how to address the behaviour and attitudes of academics towards international students in order to make them feel accepted and supported in the teaching and learning process. In a world where international students are becoming more discerning, universities that still only see them as cash cows will lose out.

Science Scene

Threatened seagrasses store as much carbon as forests

The first global analysis of carbon stored in seagrass meadows in the world’s oceans shows they can hold as much carbon as the world’s temperate and tropical forests. Researchers also estimate that, although seagrass meadows occupy less than 0.2% of the world’s oceans, they are responsible for more than 10% of all ‘blue carbon’ stores buried annually in the ocean.

Genetic safety in numbers for the duck-billed platypus
Geoff Maslen

Another of Australia’s animal icons, the platypus, has joined the koala and the Tasmanian devil in facing the risk of being wiped out by disease. But the danger for the platypus, at least for the moment, is confined to the animals on two small islands around the south-east coast of Australia although it remains under threat from habitat destruction elsewhere.

Efficient interface developed for quantum networks

Quantum computers may someday revolutionise the information world but at distant locations they must communicate with one another and so have to be linked together in a network. Physicists at the University of Innsbruck have constructed an efficient and tunable interface for quantum networks.

Fewer suicides among schizophrenics on anti-depressives

Anti-depressive drugs reduce the mortality rate of schizophrenic patients while treatment with bensodiazepines greatly increases it, especially as regards suicide. Giving several anti-psychotics simultaneously seems to have no effect at all on mortality, according to a new study examining drug combinations administered to patients with schizophrenia.

No comments: