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IAU Lynx November 2018


November 2018

IAU Lynx offers a monthly overview of higher education developments around the world. It covers new policies, initiatives and projects on various higher education topics. The information is classified by international, regional, bilateral and national initiatives.



UNESCO International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP)
UNESCO IIEP has released the findings its recent Corruption-Risk Assessment of the Georgian Higher Education Sector. The report focuses on analysing risks in financing, management of academic staff, and admission and exams. It also provides detailed recommendations to improve ethics, transparency, and accountability and the overall governance of the higher education sector.

Unesco Institute for Statistics (UIS)
Call for data
UIS has launched the 2019 Survey of Formal Education, which covers key data for the academic year ending in 2018 required for the monitoring of international and national education goals towards Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG4). Deadline for submitting data: 15 February 2019.

- Agence universitaire de la francophonie
43 universities in France, Lebanon, Belgium and Burundi - including IAU Members Université Paris-Est Créteil Val de Marne (France), Université Saint Joseph (Lebanon) and Université catholique de Louvain (Belgium) - have welcomed over 2000 students who are refugees or asylum-seekers in the context of the AUF project ‘Welcome and integration of students in exile’ (Accueil et intégration des étudiants en exil). The students from 53 countries in the Middle East and Sudan will follow a programme including training in French for non-French speaking students and involves links with local associations and organisations.

- Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
The OECD in partnership with the European Commission has published Supporting Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Higher Education in The Netherlands. The report based on research and case studies within 9 Dutch higher education institutions, presents key findings as well as good practices, teaching and learning approaches, startup support and recommendations. The publication is part of HEInnovate, a joint initiative of the European Commission and the OECD.

- World Bank
On 23 October, the World Bank and the government of Afghanistan signed grant agreements for primary, secondary and higher education as well as advancing the economic and social standing of rural women. This includes US$5 million additional grant for the Higher Education Development Project (HEDP) to increase access to higher education in Afghanistan

- Scholars at Risk

The Scholars at Risk Network, a non-profit organisation, have released Free to Think 2018 which provides data and analysis on attacks on academics, students, and other members of the higher education community throughout the world. The report is the outcome of the Academic Freedom Monitoring Project and details 294 reported attacks on higher education communities in 47 countries, from September 2017, to August 2018.

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Africa - Americas - Asia & Pacific - Europe

- Africa

Ashinaga Africa Initiative - 2019 Leadership Programme
Call for Applications
The Ashinaga Africa Initiative, launched in 2014 aims to contribute to Sub-Saharan Africa’s expanding role in global development through increasing access to higher education abroad. The initiative supports orphaned students who are committed to returning home and initiating change, by providing access to full financial support to study at a university abroad. Closing date for applications: 16th December 2018.

Support for self-assessment of African Universities
Call for expressions of interest - deadline extended
The Francophone Institute for University Governance (IFGU) is looking for higher education institutions in Central Africa, the Great Lakes, West Africa and the Indian Ocean that are members of the Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie (AUF) and wish to invest in a self-assessment process with the support of the IFGU and partners (in French)
New Deadline for applications: 30 November 2018

African Center of Excellence in Energy for Sustainable Development (ACE-ESD)
Call for PhD students
The ACE-ESD based at the University of Rwanda isseeking to recruit a number of highly motivated doctoral students from Rwanda as well as candidates from Eastern and Southern Africa Region in the field of energy with a focus on renewable energy, electrical power systems and energy economics.
Closing date for applications: 10 December 2018.

NAFSA Global Dialogue Fellowship Programme 2019
The 2019 edition of the Fellowship Programme will support five university leaders from sub-Saharan Africa to help increase their institutional capacity for international education and expand opportunities for partnerships and exchange of expertise.
Closing date: 16 November 2018

- Americas

UNESCO International Institute for Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNESCO-IESALC)
On 9 October, UNESCO - IESALC, represented by its Director, Pedro Henríquez Guajardo, and the Coimbra Group of Brazilian Universities (GCUB) represented by its Executive Director, Professor Rossana Valéria de Souza e Silva, signed a framework agreement for inter-institutional cooperation that seeks to find synergies for the internationalisation of Latin American and Caribbean higher education.

- Asia & Pacific

Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)
The 7th APEC Conference on Cooperation in Higher Education in the Asia-Pacific Region was held on 11 - 12 September, in Vladivostok, Russia. The presentations of the Conference, themed ‘Education in the Digital Era: Challenges and Opportunities for APEC’ are now available. Topics addressed include university-based science and technology park clusters; the Fourth Industrial Revolution, 21st century skills and STEM education; and the university in a multi-stakeholder architecture.

- Europe

European Commission
Networks of European Universities - call for applications
As part of the European Commission’s European Universities Initiative, the European Union has launched a call for applications for the ‘Networks of European Universities’ scheme. Funding of EUR 30 million will support the creation of six cross-border alliances of at least three universities each.

European Research Council (ERC)
A new agreement was signed in Kyoto in October by the European Commission’s Director General for Research and Innovation, Jean-Eric Paquet, and the President of the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), Michinari Hamaguchi. The agreement aims to encourage high-calibre researchers from Japan to temporarily join European Research Council (ERC)-funded research teams.

European Association of Universities
The EUA has published Trends 2018 which explores how learning and teaching at European higher education institutions evolve in the context of changing demands, technological and societal development, and European- and national-level policies and reforms. This report gathers data from more than 300 higher education institutions in 48 European countries.

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Argentina - Qatar

Argentina and Qatar have signed a memorandum of understanding on collaboration in higher education and scientific research. The areas of cooperation will include administration, teacher’s professional development and technology for foreign language learning. Exchange of experts and specialists in these areas will be facilitated.

Egypt - Japan

Minister of Higher Education Khaled Abdel Ghaffar met with his Japanese counterpart Yuriko Koike in October to discuss cooperation between Egyptian and Japanese universities. A Memorandum of Understanding was also signed between the Egyptian Minister and the University of Tokyo, an IAU Member, for training university managers.

United Kingdom - Mexico

The agreement on mutual recognition of university degrees awarded by the universities in Mexico and United Kingdom came into operation on 19 September 2018. Signed in 2015, this agreement will facilitate academic cooperation between both countries.

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Argentina Angola Canada Chile
Egypt Finland France Germany
Ghana Hong Kong Hungary India
Ireland Israel Japan Jordan
Kazakhstan Kenya Mexico The Netherlands
New Zealand Pakistan Rwanda South Africa
Spain Sweden United Kingdom United States

- Argentina

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology has launched a web portal for students in the framework of the National Academic Recognition System (Sistema Nacional de Reconocimiento Académico).

- Angola
The Minister for Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, Maria de Rosário Sambo, recently announced that illegal institutions would not be able to operate from 2019, and defended the current university evaluation aiming to harmonise curricula at national level, and creating standards to be used throughout the country. (in Portuguese)

- Canada

Inclusive best practices
0n 23 October, Universities Canada launched a new online tool to share university best practices and policies in advancing equity, diversity and inclusion.

Competency-based Education
The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) has published Competency-based Education: Driving the Skills-measurement Agenda. The report explores the development of CBE in North America and examines its application in Ontario.

- Chile

The Ministry of Education and UN Women ratified their commitment to combat gender violence in higher education at the seminar ‘Strategies and international comparative experiences against discrimination and sexual violence against women in higher education’ which took place on 30 - 31 October in Santiago.

- Egypt

In an effort to modernise and standardise medical education in the country, new reforms in medical education are being introduced in all medical schools, both public and private, from November. Basic medical-education will now take five years instead of six, followed by two years of clinical training instead of just one.

- Finland

In order to increase the visibility of Finnish higher education around the world, the first Counselors of Finnish Education and Research, have been appointed to Buenos Aires, Beijing, Singapore and Washington. The Team Finland Knowledge Experts, posted at Finnish Embassies, will promote Finnish educational and research cooperation and implement Finland’s policies to promote the internationalisation of higher education and research.

- France
Research assessment declaration
On 4 October 2018, the Conférence des Directeurs des Ecoles Françaises d’Ingénieurs (CDEFI)
signed the Declaration on Research Assessment recognising the need to improve the ways in which the outputs of scholarly research are evaluated. It is a worldwide initiative covering all scholarly disciplines and all key stakeholders including funders, publishers, professional societies, institutions, and researchers.

Higher education statistics
The first edition of Higher Education, Research and Innovation in figures (Enseignement supérieur, Recherche et Innovation en chiffres) 2018 has just been released. It includes data on 20 key indicators.

- Germany

The German Rectors’ Conference (HRK) has issued a statement on ‘predatory publishers’ - publications which enable researchers to publish for a fee without the necessary scientific quality control. The HRK calls for the pressure to publish to be reduced, and emphasises that quality should consistently be given precedence over quantity in relation to appointments, assessments and evaluations.

- Ghana

The National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE) has issued a directive to public universities in Ghana to remove all staff above 65 years from the public payroll. The directive, effective from 31 October is applicable to both academic and administrative staff over 65, although the former have the possibility to being reassigned as "consultants" paid from non-government university funds.

- Hong Kong

Presentations from the Hong Kong Qualifications Framework (HKQF) International Conference 2018 in September that celebrated HKQF’s 10th anniversary, are now available online. Themed ’QF in the Next Decade: Quality, Progression and Recognition’ the Conference explored global trends and issues of developing qualifications frameworks.

- Hungary

Academic freedom
The Central European University, an IAU Member, has announced that it will move its U.S.-accredited masters and doctoral programs to Vienna, Austria beginning in the academic year 2019-20. CEU’s decision comes as the Hungarian government has not concluded an agreement allowing CEU to operate freely in Hungary as a U.S. institution, and in the context of government measures against academic freedom.

International Hungary - Brazil conference
An international conference, organised by the Hungarian Rectors’ Conference (HRC) and the Coimbra Group of Brazilian Universities, took place in September, at the Budapest University of Technology and Economics. Themed Global Universities in the 21st Century, the presentations, now available online, covered topics including global geopolitical changes and challenges for internationalization; social accountability, innovation and entrepreneurship, and validation of credits and diplomas.

- India

The University Grants Commission (UGC) has released the list of recognised higher education Institutions (HEIs) in India and their programmes through the open and distance learning mode.

- Ireland

In October, the Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor, announced an additional €57.4 million in the Budget 2019 to provide 3,500 extra student places and for implementation of HE reforms. She also announced the ‘Human Capital Initiative’ to provide €300 million over the period 2020-2024 to mitigate Brexit risks and boost regional development. The Irish Universities Association, IUA, released a Statement asserting that the budget does not address the current funding shortfall.

- Israel

The Council for Higher Education has announced a plan to spend 430 million shekels (EUR 102 million) to attract international students, particularly from Asia.

- Japan

The National Institution for Academic Degrees and Quality Enhancement for Higher Education (NIAD-QE) has released the English version of Japanese College and University Portraits, a portal providing information on higher education institutions and academic courses in Japan.

- Jordan

Ministry changes
As of November, a royal decree has announced that Current Minister of Justice Bassam Samir Talhoni will manage the Ministry of Educationand the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research. The Ministry was previously led by Azmi Mahmoud Mahafaza who has resigned.

- Kazakhstan

The President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, in his State of the Nation Address in October, emphasised the need to increase the quality of education in higher education institutionsin the country. He said that only those institutions providing quality education should remain open, and that universities in Kazakhstan should establish partnerships with leading universities around the world. He also announced the decision to create a new regional higher education institution in the country.

- Kenya

A report on university financing by the Vice-Chancellors Committee shows that public universities are in substantial financilal difficulties. Francis Aduol, chair of the Vice-Chancellors Committee presented the report at a meeting convened by the Ministry of Education and the Commission for University Education (CUE) in November.

- Mexico

In order to bridge the gap between research and its commercial development in higher education institutions, the Secretary of Public Education (Secretaría de Educación Pública) and the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (Instituto Mexicano de la Propiedad Industrial) have signed a cooperation agreement to train teachers and students in innovation, entrepreneurship, and technological transfer though the establishment of 58 Patents Centers (Centros de Patentamiento)

- The Netherlands

Nuffic has released the stay rates of international graduates. It shows that almost 25% of the international students who studied in the Netherlands still live in the country 5 years after graduating.

- New Zealand

Impact of university research
Universities New Zealand has released the report Economic Impact of Universities’ Contribution to Innovation. The report provides an assessment of the economic impact of university expenditure on research on local economies, and the wider New Zealand economy.

Educational performance indicators
The Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) has published its yearly educational performance indicators for higher education institutions that it funds. The set of measures include first year retention rate and course completion rate.

HE participation
Education Counts has published a report that analyse factors associated with participation and achievement in higher education for young people up to the age of 20. The key purpose is to build better evidence on which groups of young people are most at risk of not participating.

- Pakistan

Countering on-campus extremism
The Higher Education Commission (HEC) and National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) signed a Letter of Intent to engage faculty members and students from universities across Pakistan in developing a national strategy to counter on-campus extremism.

- Rwanda

East African Institute for Fundamental Research opened
Located at the University of Rwanda, the East African Institute for Fundamental Research was inaugurated on 18 October. The Institute is partnered with the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, based in Italy, and UNESCO. Its research programme will include in various branches of physics, and will offer MSc degrees, and later expand into offering PhD programmes.

- South Africa

Research investment grows
A national survey produced on behalf of the Government Department of Science and Technology shows that in 2016-17, gross domestic expenditure on Research and Experimental Development (GERD) increasedto R35.7 billion (EUR 2.2 billion), with the higher education sector the largest contributor to the overall increase. While the largest amount of R&D expenditure is spent on research on communicable diseases, over the last decade South Africa has doubled the amount it spends on research into ICT and the environment.

- Spain

New digital initiative
The Spanish National Library and the Spanish Universities association, Crue Universidades Españolas, have signed an agreement to collaborate on the Spanish Web Archive in order to preserve and ensure access to online Spanish documentary heritage.

- Sweden

Internationalisation inquiry - findings
The final report of a government inquiry on internationalisation of Swedish HEIs has just been published. Increased Attractivity - Momentum for Sweden as a Knowledge Nation, proposes a comprehensive strategy for expanding the internationalisation of Swedish higher education.

- United Kingdom

Government review - Select Committee findings
The House of Commons’ Education select committee released ‘Value for Money in Higher Education’, on 5 November as part of the Government’s review of post-18 education and funding. The report prioritises support for disadvantaged students and recommends that the government return to the pre-2016 system and reinstate the means-tested system of loans and maintenance grants. It also calls for strict criteria for universities on acceptable levels of pay for senior management and in particular Vice-Chancellors.

Flexible learning
Universities UK (UUK) and the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) have released the findings of research which looked at the decline in part-time student enrolments in the UK and the changing needs of students and employers. The results form the basis of a Statement to the Government recommending more flexible learning opportunities, greater support for students moving between work and study, and more collaboration between employers and higher education.

- United States

Sexual assault on campus - rule changes being considered
Rule changes to Title IX legislation barring gender discrimination in higher education institutions that receive federal funding are currently being considered by the Government Education Department. The changes would narrow the definition of sexual assault on campus and include a cross-examination provision.

Tenure-track positions decline
A recent report by the American Association of University Professors found that non-tenure track positions accounted for 73% of instructional positions across all institutions in the United States in 2016. The decline of tenure-track positions was even greater at two-year institutions.

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IAU Lynx October Edition
IAU Lynx September Edition
IAU Lynx July Edition

IAU Lynx coordinator: Amanda Sudic
Collaborating team: Melissa Herlaut, Nicholas Poulton, Samuel Pousson, Carine Sebast and Hilligje van’t Land
Contact: [email protected]
© IAU 2018

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