International Association of Universities
Building a Worldwide Higher Education Community
EN  |   FR
Twitter Linkedin Youtube

Home > Knowledge hub

IAU Lynx September 2018


September 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.



Nominations are open for the 2018 UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa Prize for the Use of ICT in Education. This year’s theme is ‘The use of innovative Information and Communication Technologies to Ensure Education for the Most Vulnerable Groups’. Two awards will be granted of US$ 25,000.
Deadline for submission: 31 October 2018.

On 25 July, Togo became the first country to ratify UNESCO’s Revised Convention on the Recognition of Studies, Certificates, Diplomas, Degrees and Other Academic Qualifications in Higher Education in African States, known as the Addis Convention. in August, The ratification process was engaged for Djibouti and Gambia, and Mauritius started accession. The Addis Convention, which will become enter into force when ten UNESCO Member States ratify the Convention, will facilitate academic mobility at national, regional and international levels through the recognition of educational qualifications.

A provisional evaluation framework for higher education institutions in Mali was developed and validated by quality assurance experts at a workshop held in Mali in late June within the context of the UNESCO-Shenzhen Project ‘Strengthening Quality Assurance in Higher Education in Africa’. The evaluation framework will be piloted in the University of Ségou before establishing a complete institutional evaluation system for HEIs in Mali.

UNESCO - International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP)
UNESCO IIEP has published four new policy briefs on Internal Quality Assurance (IQA) in higher education. These are intended to support policy-makers and academic quality officers in developing and implementing more effective and innovative IQA systems. Four themes are addressed:
- Internal Quality Assurance and Employability - How to Strengthen the Education - Employment Linkage
- The Effects of Internal Quality Assurance - How to Make IQA more Effective for Quality Enhancement
- Internal Quality Assurance and Management - How to Close the Loop between evidence and Decision-making
- Linking External and Internal Quality Assurance.

International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP) - Pôle Dakar/ Mauritania
IIEP - Pôle Dakar has published a report on higher education and research in Mauritania (Mauritanie - L’Enseignement supérieur et la recherche : éléments d’efficacité - available in French only) in collaboration with the Ministry Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research. It presents the sub-sector of higher education, and analyses internal efficiency, costs and financing, and external efficiency in order to highlight barriers to performance enhancement and to the development of research.

- United Nations
The 2018 SDGs Index and Dashboards Reporthas been launched. It compares the performance of all 193 UN countries on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Agenda 2030, provides detailed SDG Dashboards to help identify implementation priorities for the SDGs and also indicate areas requiring progress.

- Chevening
Scholarships - Call for applications
Chevening, the UK Government’s international awards programme aimed at developing global leaders, is offering fully-funded scholarships for one-year Masters courses in the UK for the Applications for the academic year 2019/2020.
Deadline for applications: 8 November 2018

- Commonwealth of Learning
COL has updated its course on ‘Understanding Open Educational Resources (OER)’ as a stand-alone platform to improve the adoption of OER by teachers, educational institutions and policy makers.

Innovations in Higher Education: Re-Imagining Learning, a paper given by Asha Kanwar, COL CEO at the Association of Caribbean Higher Education Administrators (ACHEA) Annual Conference, is now available.

- Educause
Educause has published the 2018 NMC Horizon Report. The report identifies key trends and challenges in accelerating technology adoption and charts the impact of innovative technologies for higher education across the globe. Key trends include advancing cultures of innovation and an increase in cross-institution collaboration, the proliferation and maturing of of open education resources and a rise in interdisciplinary studies.

- International Disability Alliance
International organisations, UN agencies including UNESCO, disability organisations and 46 national governments, signed the Global Disability Summit Charter for Change at the first Global Disability Summit held in London, UK on 24 July. The Charter contains a set of ten commitments aiming to accelerate global action for disability-inclusive development in education, assistive digital technologies; gender equality; and post-disaster reconstruction. The Summit was co-hosted by International Disability Alliance, UK Department for International Development (DfID) in partnership with the Government of Kenya.

- International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE)
Call for papers
A call for papers has been launched for the International Symposium on Open and Distance Learning (ISODEL) 2018 themed ‘Making Education 4.0 for Indonesia’, to be held on 3 - 5 December, 2018 in Bali, Indonesia. The event is organised in cooperation with ICDE, Indonesian Open University (UT), Indonesian Distance Learning Network (IDLN) and SEAMEO Secretariat.
Deadline for sending abstracts: 10 September 2018.

- International Network of Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education (INQAAHE)
Call for papers
The International Network of Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education (INQAAHE) has launched a call for proposals for papers and posters for presentation during the 2019 INQAAHE Conference in March 2019.

- World Academy of Sciences
Call for applications - TWAS Fellowships for Research and Advanced Training
The World Academy of Sciences is offering 3 to 12 months fellowships for young researchers in developing countries in the southto carry out research in another developing country in the south. Applicants must have at least a MSc degree. Applications to be submitted by 1 October 2018.

- World Bank
The World Bank has announced new Commitments on Disability Inclusion subsequent to Global Disability Summit held in July.

- Boston College Center for International Higher Education
Boston College Center for International Higher Education, an IAU Member, has released a report on Higher Education Management Training Schemes in the field of Development Cooperation. Commissioned by the German Rectors’ Conference (HRK) and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the report is based on a worldwide survey and shows that while participant numbers for HE management training are low, all regions of the world are either providers or target countries and that the training offered is diverse and evolving.

Return to top


Africa - Asia & Pacific - Europe

- Africa

Association of African Universities
African Universities Week

The Association of African Universities (AAU) is inviting all higher education institutions in Africa to celebrate the 2018 African Universities’ Week on 12 - 16 November 2018. The event will look at achievements of the African higher education sector and reflect on progress, challenges and opportunities. The theme for this year is The Africa We Want: The Role of Young People, is inspired by Agenda 2063, highlighting the role to be played by African youth in influencing future policy, legislative and social change.

British Council - DAAD
New Report on Building PhD Capacity in Sub-Saharan Africa
A joint report has been published by the British Council and DAAD, the German Academic Exchange Service. Entitled Building PhD Capacity in Sub-Saharan Africa, the report builds upon an earlier report in 2012 by IAU and ACUP (Catalan Association of Public Universities) which looked at PhD programmes in several member universities in Africa. The new report looks at PhD education and training at the national level in six African countries.

African Minds
The Influence of Higher Education on the Lives of Young South Africans
Going To University - the Influence of Higher Education on the Lives of Young South Africans, the latest book in the series Higher Education Dynamics has been published by African Minds. Available as an open-access e-book, it is authored by Jennifer M. Case, Delia Marshall, Sioux McKenna and Disaapele Mogashana. It reports on a study in which in-depth interviews were conducted with 73 students from different socio-economic backgrounds who entered university in South Africa some six years beforehand.

- Americas

International Institute for Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (IESALC)
Following the Regional Conference for Higher education for Latin America and the Caribbean (CRES 2018), which concluded on 15 June in Cordoba, ArgentinaIESALC has issued a collection of books available as e-publications on issues addressed during the conference, covering internationalization, autonomy, sustainable developmentand the role of higher education in social challenges.

Regional Meeting of Ministers of Education of Latin America and the Caribbean - Regional roadmap for SDG4
The Cochabamba Agreements: Regional Solidarity for Achieving SDG4-E2030 in Latin America and the Caribbean were approved at the second Regional Meeting of Ministers of Education of Latin America and the Caribbean in Cochabamba, Bolivia on 24 July. The agreements establish the adoption of the Regional Roadmap for the Implementation of SDG4-E2030 in Latin America and the Caribbean, an instrument that will support Latin American countries’ efforts to achieve the targets of Sustainable Development Goal 4, which refers to lifelong quality, inclusive and equitable education.

La Triada - university alliance formed
On 15 August 2018 in Cartagena, Colombia, an alliance called La Triada (“the triad”), was formed between 3 Latin American universities: University of the Andes, Colombia, the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, and the Monterrey Institute of Technology, Mexico. University rectors committed to expand academic cooperation, collaborate in research, exchange good practice and increase mobility.

- Asia & Pacific

ASEAN University Network (AUN)
AUN received the first Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) Diversity Creates Award in Bucharest in June which recognises individuals and institutions making an outstanding contribution to ASEF’s mission of promoting greater mutual understanding, between Asia Europe and to promoting ASEF’s core values of Knowledge-sharing, innovation, inclusion, sustainability.

Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization - Regional Training Center (SEAMEO-RETRAC)
SEAMEO RETRAC has released keynote speeches, proceedings and presentations from the 2018 International Conference on Leadership and Management in Higher Education in a Globalized World: Innovations and Best Practices’ that took place in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam on July 5 - 6, 2018. Sessions addressed leadership in policy innovation in higher education; technology for innovative teaching and learning; university-industry partnership development; curriculum Innovation, teaching development, and quality Assurance.

- Europe

European University Information Systems (EUNIS)
The Book of Proceedings and presentations from the EUNIS 2018 Annual Congress held on 6 - 8 June 2018 in Paris, France are available online. EUNIS brings together those who are responsible for the management, development and the policy for Information Technology in Higher Education in Europe.

European Research Council (ERC)
ERC President - Call for applications
Applications are invited to fill the post of the next President of the European Research Council. Deadline to apply: 1 October 2018

Eurostudent VI
Eurostudent has released its latest report ‘Social and Economic Conditions of Student Life in Europe 2016-2018’. It details findings of the 6th round of the EUROSTUDENT project, to which 28 countries of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) have contributed between 2016 and 2018. It is a compendium of key indicators and provides comparable data on the social and economic conditions of students, as well as student mobility, in Europe.

Return to top


France - Singapore
Singaporean Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing and French Minister for Higher Education, Research and Innovation Frédérique Vidal signed 5 agreements in higher education and science cooperation during their meeting in Paris on 13 July.

France - Tunisia
The Tunisian Minister of Higher Education and Research, Slim Khalbous, met with the French Ambassador to Tunisia, Olivier Poivre d’Arvor, to continue theplanning of the Franco-Tunisian University of Africa and the Mediterranean (l’Université franco-tunisienne pour l’Afrique et la Méditerranée). The Franco-Tunisian university is set to receive its first students in 2019-2020, and will award French degrees and diplomas.

Mauritius - Kenya
The Ministry of Education and Human Resources, Tertiary Education and Scientific Research of Mauritius has announced that it will sign an MoU with the Ministry of Education of Kenya for collaboration in Higher Education and Scientific Research. The areas of cooperation will include mutual recognition and equivalence of qualifications, staff and student exchanges, accreditation and quality assurance as well as scholarship programmes.


Return to top


Australia Bangladesh Canada Chile
China Egypt France Germany
Hungary India Ireland Netherlands
New Zealand Pakistan Portugal South Africa
Spain Thailand Tunisia United Kingdom
United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Zimbabwe

- Australia

National higher education statistics
The Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) has published the Statistics Report on TEQSA Registered Higher Education Providers 2018 which provides a snapshot and time series of national statistics from across the sector in four key areas: providers, students, academic staff and finance, with additional analysis on overseas students.

Respect. Now. Always. Initiative
Universities Australia has released two sets of guidelines under the UA 10-point Action Plan and the Respect. Now. Always. Initiative, both aimed at preventing and addressing sexual assault and harassment across the sector:

Student finance
Universities Australia‘s 2017 Student Finances Survey provides an evidence-based picture of the financial situation of students at Australian universities. Some 18,500 students from 38 Universities Australia member universities participated in the survey that covers both domestic and international students at all levels of study.

- Bangladesh

40 public universities in Bangladesh signed the Annual Performance Agreement with the University Grants Commission (UGC) for the fiscal year 2018-2019 under the government’s Performance Management Framework Policy on 8 July. The major goal of the agreement is to establish good governance and excellence in higher educational institutions.

- Canada

International students
The Canadian Bureau for International Education has released the results of the 2018 CBIE International Student Survey. Over 14,000 international students at higher education institutions throughout Canada replied to the survey. The results show that a growing number of students surveyed (60%) indicated an intention to seek permanent residence in Canada. Other highlights include a growing concern over housing costs, insights on students with dependents, and experiences with Indigenous identity.

Nationwide student survey results released
The results from a nationwide student survey from the Canadian University Survey Consortium, have been released. The report brings together data from 14,760 final year undergraduate students from 32 universities (French version). The majority of students report being satisfied with their university experience. In terms of finance, earnings from work accounted for the largest amount of financing for their education, ahead of government loans and bursaries. 37% of students have delayed completing their programme and 37% of graduating students expect to apply to graduate school.

- Chile

Growth in university enrolment - official data
The Ministry of Education has released official data on higher education. It shows a growth in university enrollment whereas vocational and technical education enrollment is stagnating. This situation could be linked to tuition-free higher education for the most vulnerable initiated in 2016.

Graduate employment
Mifuturo, the Ministry of Education official information portal, has updated figures of graduate employment and income. Searches can be carried out by name and type of institution and field of studies.

- China

Universities research programme
The Ministry of Education has released a circular calling on local educational authorities to promote basic research in universities through a programme that encourages the building of scientific centres and technological infrastructure, and cooperation with international institutions.

International students and employment
The Chinese government has been introducing a number of exploratorychanges allowing international students in Beijing and Shanghai to take part-time jobs or internships off campus as long as they obtain approval from their academic institutions and the administrative authorities, according to a statement of Chinese Ministry of Education.

Teacher education - government funding
In August, the Ministry of Education introduced a regulation for government-paid teaching students at six major universities in central and western regions of China. Tuition fees and accommodation and daily expenses will be paid by the central government, as well as subsidies for daily expenses, according to the regulation. The regulation also shortens the service periods for students from ten to six years to teach at primary and middle schools after graduation, and also provides incentives for students to work in rural areas.

- Egypt

New law for international branch campuses
A new law was voted in parliament in July for the establishment of international branch universities in the country, with the aim of strengthening the country’s existing system. Branch campuses will be required to submit a five-year plan to the government and allocate a certain percentage of places for students and teaching staff to Egyptian nationals.

- France

Gender equality - Grandes Ecoles
The Conférence des Grandes Ecoles has released an infographic on gender based equality among its member institutions. It shows that gender balance in engineering schools remains a major concern whereas it is balanced in management schools and other institutions.

Education and Research careers for Sustainable Development
A guide on how higher education and research careers can contribute to reach sustainable development goals have been released by organisations including the Conférence des Présidents d’Université, the Conférence des Grandes Ecoles, REFEDD (The French Network of Students for Sustainable Development) and with input from the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation.

Centre International d’Etudes Pédagogiques (CIEP)
The 2017 activity report for the CIEP, an IAU Member, is now available online.

- Germany

Shorter degree completion times
A new study, published by the CHE Centre for Higher Education, based in Gütersloh, Germany, shows that more students in Germany are obtaining degrees within a shorter ‘reasonable’ time period than prior to the Bologna reforms. Improvements were most marked at traditional universities. The study compares length of studying from 2003 to 2005 with new figures covering 2015 to 2017.

- Hungary

The Hungarian Hungarian Ministry for Human Resources has announced plans to remove gender studies from the country’s list of accredited university study programmes. The European University Association, European Federation of Academies of Sciences and Humanities (ALLEA), and the All European Academies (ALLEA), have raised concerns of university autonomy and called on the Hungarian Government to cancel these plans. The ban will primarily impact Central European University, an IAU Member institution, and Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest (ELTE) who currently offer gender studies programmes.

- India

University autonomy
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has announced that it has granted autonomy to 76 Educational Institutions including 62 Universities (5 Central Universities, 21 State Universities, 34 Deemed to be Universities and 2 Private Universities) and 14 Colleges across the country.

Higher Education Commission of India - Bill
The Ministry has released a draft Higher Education Commission of India Bill, 2018 to establish the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI)which will promote and maintain academic standards and monitor and evaluate the academic performance of higher education institutions.

International academic staff recruitment
A new regulation by the University Grants Commission (UGC) will enable Ph.D degree-holders from a foreign university with a ranking among top 500 in the QS, THE, or Shanghai World University Rankings to be eligible for direct recruitment as Assistant Professor in universities and colleges.

Research and innovation
Vice-Chancellors gathered at a 3-day Conference on Research and Innovation in Higher Education held July 26 - 28 committed to improve quality of teaching and learning and adopted a 10-point resolution for transforming Universities into institutions engaged in cutting edge research.

- Ireland

Higher Education and Innovation Fund
The Minister for Education and Skills Richard Bruton, and the Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor, launched the new Higher Education and Innovation Fund in July. Applications are being sought from Irish higher education institutions for the funding, totalling over €5 million. The innovation fund is part of the additional €100m which the government are investing in higher education since 2016.

Ireland’s first Technical University to open
The creation of the technological university is part of the Government’s plan to drive regional economic growth and development under Ireland Project 2040. The new university, to be known as Technological University Dublin (TU Dublin) and will be set up after the dissolution of Dublin Institute of Technology, Institute of Technology Blanchardstown and Institute of Technology Tallaght, at the beginning of 2019.

Internationalisation strategies
A new report on the Internationalisation of Irish Higher Education commissioned by the Higher Education Authority and funded by the Irish Research Council has been released. The report, based on an in-depth study of HEIs in Ireland, explores the extent to which Irish higher education institutions have become internationalised and the range of strategies and approaches they have developed.

- The Netherlands

NUFFIC Orange Knowledge Programme - Call for proposals
NUFFIC, the Dutch organisation for Internationalisation in Education (NUFFIC), has launched a call for joint proposals for tailor-made trainings (TMTs) in the Orange Knowledge Programme which involves over 50 developing countries. Deadline to apply: 15 October 2018

- New Zealand

Work visa rules change for international students
The Government has announced changes to post-study employment rights for international students in New Zealand. Under the new rules, students of bachelor degree level or higher will be eligible for a three year work visa and a requirement linking one type of work visa to particular employers will be abolished. The changes come into effect on 26 November 2018.

Micro-credential system introduced
The New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA), an IAU Affiliate Member, is introducing a micro-credential system as part of New Zealand’s regulated education and training system to help ensure it remains relevant in a period of fast paced social, economic and technological changes.

Student transition
The Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) - Te Amorangi Mātauranga Matua has released the report ’Transition to Tertiary Life’ - which examines students’ enrolment and transition to higher education->] and identifies opportunities to improve the student experience.

- Pakistan

Greener Pakistan
The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has addressed a letter to Vice-Chancellors and rectors of all public and private sector universities, inviting them to be an active part of Greener Pakistan movement by initiating Tree Plantation Campaigns in their respective campuses.

- Portugal

Access to Higher Education - + Higher Programme
The Portuguese Government Higher Education Directorate has announced that in 2018-2019, the + Higher Programme (Programa +Superior) will provide 1605 new student grants, to encourage and support the attendance of higher education for low-income students, and for regions of the country with less demand.

- South Africa

Student Financial aid
Higher Education Minister Naledi Pandor has has announced the appointment of Dr Randall Carolissen as the administrator for the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) in an effort to resolve delays of payments to students who qualify for bursaries dating back to last year. The Higher Education Department indicated that it aims to open applications in early September, despite the non-payment backlog.

- Spain

UniversiTIC - ICT in universities
Conference of Spanish University Rectors (Crue Universidades Españolas) has released a report which analyses the impact of ICT in Spanish universities. Called UniversiTIC , it shows a significant growth on issues of data transparency in universities as well as an increase in distance education offers.

- Thailand

The Ministry of Education Office of the Higher Education Commission (OHEC), issued a Directory of Coordinators for International Affairs in Thai Higher Education Institutions 2018 meant as a tool for higher education institutions and other organisations both in Thailand and overseas to foster partnerships and networking.

- Tunisia

The Minister of Higher Education and Research, Slim Khalbous, announced the creation of a national agency to receive and guide foreign students and facilitate the admission of Sub-Saharan students to public universities (Agence d’accueil des étudiants africains) at the Tunisian African Empowerment Forum (TAEF 2018) in July in Tunis.

- United Kingdom

House of Lords report on student finance released
The UK House of Lords Select Committee released the findings of their enquiry into higher education in June. The report, entitled ‘Treating Students Fairly: The Economics of Post-School Education’ examines the impact of 2012 reforms which changed most higher education funding in the UK to tuition fees. The report argues the reforms have partly led to a decline in non-degree qualifications and in flexible and part-time learning. It calls for a widening of student maintenance support for changes to student loans.

Employers’ demand for HE skills
Universities UK (UUK) released Solving Future Skills Challenges in August. The report highlights the need for continual skill upgrading, lifelong learning and higher education qualifications in the context of rising employer demand for the broad skills developed at university. The report also examines how technological trends such as automation, robotics, artificial intelligence and digital technology, are creating greater demand for post-secondary qualifications.

International students
UUK has also published International Facts and Figures 2018 presents a snapshot of the international dimensions of UK higher education. The figures show that the UK is the second most popular destination for international students, however the number of international enrolments in UK universities has leveled off. The report also shows that transnational education is an increasingly significant part of UK universities’ international activity.

United Kingdom - Scotland
Student welfare
From August 2018, the Scottish Government is the first national government to make feminine sanitary products available to students at schools, colleges and universities. The government has allocated £5.2m funding for the scheme.

- United States

Gender parity and leadership
A new report by the American Council on Education (ACE) ‘Leading the Way to Parity: Preparation, Persistence, and the Role of Women Presidents’ provides information and recommendations aimed at increasing the representation of women Presidents of higher education institutions in the United States, currently around 30% of presidencies. The report stresses the importance of bringing women into higher levels of institutional leadership as well as the presidency.

University Alliance for Refugees and At-Risk Migrants (UARRM) launched
The University Alliance for Refugees and At-Risk Migrants (UARRM) was launched on 23 July at a symposium hosted by Rutgers University. UARRM is centered on providing higher education opportunities and vocational training for refugees and at-risk migrants, and engaging with the forthcoming UN Global Compacts for Migration and Refugees.

The Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U), has published A Vision of Equity which details case studies from thirteen institutions that participated in AACU’s Committing to Equity and Inclusive Excellence project. It details evidence-based interventions focused on improving student success and includes practical examples, models, and resources for identifying and addressing disparities in student outcomes.

- Uruguay

Congreso Nacional de Educación
The National Congress of Education (CNE) has released its latest report. CNE has an advisory and consultative role in matters of education.

- Uzbekistan

National ranking established
The Ministry of Higher and Secondary-Specialised Education has established a ranking of the country’s 57 higher educational institutions based on 23 indicators.

- Zimbabwe

Launch of National Qualifications Framework
The Zimbabwe National Qualifications Framework (ZNQF) was launched in July by the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development. The framework will facilitate the harmonisation of national qualifications, enable student mobility of learners as well as the portability and comparability of qualifications in the country and the SADC region. The National Skills Audit, also released by the Ministry, indicated significant skills deficit in technology, science and technology.

Internationalisation of Higher Education
During a recent workshop held by the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development and the Zimbabwe Council for Higher Education, stakeholders engaged in discussions for the development of a framework for the Internationalisation of Higher and Tertiary Education (IHTE).

Return to top

IAU Lynx July Edition
IAU Lynx June Edition
IAU Lynx May Edition

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

NGO in official partnership with UNESCO in associate status
International Association of Universities, UNESCO House, 1 rue Miollis, 75732 Paris cedex 15, France
Contact  |   Sitemap  |   Terms of use  |   Credits