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IAU Lynx - March 2018


March 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.

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Education for Sustainable Development
UNESCO has released the report Issues and Trends in Education for Sustainable Development, the fifth in UNESCO’s Education on the Move series. It presents an overview of ESD and highlights key issues related to ESD policy and practice.

International Day for Women and Girls in Science
In a joint Statement issued for International Day for Women and Girls in Science on 11 February, the Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, and the Executive Director of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, reaffirmed their commitment to continue working with public, private and civil society partners to ensure that girls and women are represented more equitably, and granted full opportunities to succeed in science-related disciplines.

Call for nominations for UNESCO - Japan Prize on Education for Sustainable Development
UNESCO has launched the 2018 UNESCO-Japan Prize on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). Funded by the Government of Japan, the Prize awards three outstanding ESD projects and programmes with US$50,000 each. Governments of all Member States as well as NGOs in official partnership with UNESCO are invited to nominate up to three individuals, institutions or organizations engaged in ESD. Deadline for submissions: 3 May 2018.

UNESCO Bangkok
Policy Briefs on Internal Migration in Southeast Asia, produced jointly by UNESCO Bangkok, UNDP, International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and UN-Habitat, summarise currently available research on internal migration across 9 Southeast Asian states: Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Viet Nam.

The UNESCO project Strengthening Quality Assurance in Higher Education in Africa was officially launched at country level in Senegal on 14 February 2018. The project aims is to strengthen higher education systems at the institutional, national and regional levels in African countries by developing quality assurance mechanisms.

UNESCO International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP)
UNESCO IIEP has released Internal Quality Assurance: Enhancing Higher Education Quality and Graduate Employability that presents international trends in IQA, including innovative practices and principles. Its aim is to serve as a guide for higher education institutions planning to design and develop their own quality assurance systems.

- Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU) and Commonwealth of Learning (COL)

Commonwealth Education Partnership for Sustainable Development
The Commonwealth Education Partnership for Sustainable Development was signed by the Association of Commonwealth Universities, the Commonwealth of Learning and the Commonwealth Secretariat at the 20th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers (CCEM) on 23 February in Nadi, Fiji. The partnership will see all three organisations work together to support member states to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

Commonwealth Education Policy Framework
The Commonwealth Education Policy Framework (CEPF) was also agreed by Education Ministers at the Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers. Drawing on both the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Incheon Declaration, the Framework plans to substantially increase scholarships for students from developing countries, and to work towards achieving equal gender access to high-quality higher education.

- Association of International Education Administrators (AIEA)

Lessons from Leaders in Internationalization
A series of interviews entitled They were at the Beginning: Lessons from Leaders in Internationalization are available online. These interviews focus on leaders who laid the foundation for internationalization in higher education in the United States and other countries.

-  Distance Education Network Consortium (CREAD)/Virtual Educa (VE), the Latin American and Caribbean Institute of Distance Higher Education Quality (CALED)

Call for presentations for the The VI Cread Andes Convention
A call for presentations has been announced for The VI Cread Andes Convention and VI Virtual Educa Ecuador Encounter themed Evaluation, Certification and Accreditation of Higher Distance and Online Education in the Americas, Africa, Asia, Europe and Oceania. The conference will take place at the Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja (UTPL), Ecuador, an IAU Member, on 29 May - 1 June 2018. Deadline for sending papers: 2 April.

- Graduate Women International (GWI)

International Day of Women and Girls Scientists
The third International Day of Women and Girls Scientists was held in Geneva, Switzerland, on 11 February. GWI reiterated its support for global cooperation and stressed that removing the barriers girls and women face in science studies and careers is vital for the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

- International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education (INQAAHE)

Guidelines of Good Practice
The Guidelines of Good Practice: the INQAAHE Approach to Evaluating the Evaluator is now available online. This presentation was given at the International Conference on Diversity, Quality and Improvement held in Santiago, Chile organised by INQAAHE in cooperation with CINDA (Centro Interuniversitario de Desarrollo), RIACES (La Red Iberoamericana para el Aseguramiento de la Calidad en la Educación Superior), Ministry of Education in Chile and UNESCO-IESALC.

- International Sustainable Campus Network (ISCN) and the Global University Leaders Forum (GULF)

Sustainable Campus Best Practices
A new report by the ISCN in collaboration with GULF was launched at the 2018 World Economic Forum. Sustainable Development: Educating with Purpose : 2018 Sustainable Campus Best Practices from ISCN and Gulf Universities details sustainability case studies at 42 universities.

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Africa - Americas - Arab States - Asia & Pacific - Europe

- Africa

African Union
The African Union has released a ten-year plan, The Revised Migration Policy Framework for Africa and Plan of Action (2018-2027), proposing that African countries, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa, counter the flow of skilled nationals, including doctors, nurses and engineers, by providing educational and employment opportunities and professional development to qualified nationals in their home countries.

Centre for Higher Education Trust (CHET)
CHET’s Higher Education Research and Advocacy Network in Africa (Herana) project has published An Empirical Overview of Emerging Research Universities in Africa which reports on data and indicators for a group of eight emerging research universities in Africa. It concludes with an assessment of performance which focuses on high-level knowledge inputs and outputs that are taken to be characteristic of a research-oriented university in Africa.

International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE)
ICDE has launched a call inviting interested institutions, project/networks, experts and relevant stakeholders to submit an expression of interest for participating in a network for Massive Scale Higher Education in Sub-Saharan Africa. The initiative aims to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular SDG4, Education 2030 and will address high-quality, large-scale, programmes with a focus on PhD education. Deadline: 23 March 2018.

- Americas

University Climate Change Coalition (UC3)
13 Universities in the United States, Canada and Mexico have launched the University Climate Change Coalition (UC3) to leverage their research and resources for university-led climate action. The coalition was announced at the 2018 Higher Education Climate Leadership Summit in February by Janet Napolitano, President of the University of California.

Organización de Estados Iberoamericanos para la Educación, la Ciencia y la Cultura (OEI)
OEI has published the latest issue of the Iberoamerican Journal of Education. This special issue of the journal deals with pedagogy and university social responsibility.

Instituto Internacional para la Educación Superior en América Latina y el Caribe (IESALC)
A video conference from the XII Mercosur Anthropology Meeting, held in Posadas, Argentina, on 6 December 2017 is now available online. It deals with higher education and indigenous peoples worldwide, one of the thematic axes of the Regional Conference on Higher Education (CRES) to be held in Córdoba, Argentina, in June 2018.

- Asia & Pacific

Regional conference and policy dialogue
A regional conference and policy dialogue organised by Chulalongkorn University, an IAU Member, in collaboration with Thailand’s Higher Education Commission, took place on 23 - 25 January. Participants from over 18 countries took part in the conference which was organised in partnership with UNESCO Bangkok.

Asian Association of Open Universities (AAOU)
A call for papers has been launched for the Asian Association of Open Universities annual conference, to be held 24 - 26 October 2018 in Hanoi, Vietnam. The conference theme is Open Education in Human Resource Development in Asia’s Period of Integration. Deadline for abstract submission: 30 April 2018.

- Europe

Erasmus +
The European Commission published the Erasmus+ programme external midterm evaluation report on 31 January. The report is accompanied by the Commission’s own report and a working paper which includes the development of the post-2020 programme. The report confirms that the programme is highly valued, not only by beneficiaries and stakeholders, but also by European citizens as “one of the pillars of European identity”.

Public consultation
The European Commission has launched a series of public consultations to ask stakeholders and citizens in which areas Europe should invest in the future. The EUA calls on universities and national rectors conferences in Europe to respond to the consultations to underline the importance of investing in education and research. Deadline: 8 March 2018.

European University Association (EUA)
The EUA has released a position paper advocating for the enhancement of teaching and learning in universities.

Baltic University Programme (BUP)
Conference presentations from the BUP Rectors’ Conference held in Turku, Finland on 24 - 26 January 2018 are now available.

European University Continuing Education Network (EUCEN)
Eucen has released a call for presentations for its 50th conference themed Times of Transition - the Role of University Lifelong Learning. The conference will take place in Bergen, Norway on 6 - 8 June 2018. Deadline for submission of abstracts: 16 March 2018.

Network of Universities from the Capitals of Europe (UNICA)
The presentations from the 27th UNICA General Assembly and seminar entitled The Social Dimension of Higher Education and Social Responsibility of Universities hosted by Eötvös Loránd University Budapest, Hungary, in November 2017 are now available.

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Afghanistan - Thailand / Egypt - United Kingdom / Mexico - Poland

- Afghanistan - Thailand
The Deputy Minister of Academic Affairs of Afghanistan, Mr. Abdul Tawab Balakarzai, discussed the Afghan higher education system on an official visit to the UNESCO Office in Bangkok on 13 February. Their visit was part of a week-long mission in Thailand that also included meetings with Thailand’s Ministry of Education, including the Higher Education Commission and several universities to discuss student mobility and collaboration.

- Egypt - United Kingdom
A workshop by the UK Higher Education Authority (HEA) for university leaders in Egypt at the British Embassy in Cairo discussed best practices for improving higher education in Egypt. Prof Dr Mohamed Salheen, Adviser to the Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research in Egypt, and the British Ambassador to Egypt, John Casson also attended the workshop.

- Mexico - Poland
The Conference of Rectors of Academic Schools in Poland (CRASP) and the Asociación Nacional de Universidades Instituciones de Educación Superior (ANUIES) signed in February a Memorandum of Understanding which promotes cooperation between its member institutions.

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Australia Austria Belgium Brazil
Canada Chile China France
Germany Ireland Israel Hong Kong
Japan Morocco New Zealand South Africa
Sweden United Kingdon United States Zimbabwe

- Australia

Australia 2030 - Innovation plan
Innovation and Science Australia has released Australia 2030: Prosperity through Innovation: A plan for Australia to Thrive in the Global Innovation Race, a strategic plan for the Australian innovation, science and research system up to 2030.

Doctoral mobility
The Group of Eight (Go8) - India PhD Advisory Taskforce has published Two-way Mobility of PhD Students Between India and Australia. The report provides data on international doctoral mobility, identifies existing barriers and provides recommendations to address the current imbalance in mobility between the two countries .

- Austria

Austrian Conference of Universities
The Austrian Conference of Universities (uniko) together with the Conference of Universities of Applied Sciences and the Austrian Conference of Private Universities has produced a Facts sheet on the Austrian national qualifications framework. In total, there are eight levels of qualifications, which are based on the European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning.

- Belgium

Collaboration between ARES and AUF
The Academy of Research and Higher Education (ARES) and Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie (AUF) concluded a memorandum of understanding on 15 January 2018 in Brussels, Belgium. It aims to further structure and facilitate joint work in higher education between the two organisations.

- Brazil

International Academic Mobility
Expanding Vistas: International Academic Mobility in Brazil reports on a survey of 158 public and private institutions of higher education in Brazil. The report, by the Institute of International Education (IIE), assisted by the Brazilian Federal Agency for Support and Evaluation of Graduate Education (CAPES) and the Brazilian Association for International Education (FAUBAI), finds that Brazilian outward international mobility is relatively low: 0.6 per cent (15,492) of Brazilian students studied abroad during the 2016 academic year and 20,523 international students studied in Brazil in 2016.

- Canada

Indigenous students
Universities Canada has released a statement reaffirming their commitment to supporting Indigenous students, faculty, staff and local communities. This comes further to an open letter from Indigenous academic staff in Canada calling on university presidents to address the impact of the Colten Boushie case on indigenous students and higher education communities.

Green campuses
Going Greener 2017: The Road to Low-Carbon University Campuses, released by the Council of Ontario Universities, reports on the growing number of universities in the Province who have low carbon targets and sustainability strategies. It also presents case studies of partnerships between higher education institutions, municipalities, businesses and industry.

Higher education employment conditions - Ontario
A new report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives finds that 53% of post-secondary education workers in Ontario are precariously employed, holding multiple jobs, more temporary work and unpaid overtime. Specifically, the report identifies a rise in work categories that are more precarious (e.g., research assistants and teaching assistants) alongside a decline in others that have traditionally been less precarious (e.g., librarians).

- Chile

Free higher education extended
Chile’s Congress has approved the higher education reform project which further extends free higher education beneficiaries. Accreditation will also be compulsory for higher education and technical institutions starting 2020.

Student retention
The Ministry of Education has released the figures of first year student retention rates. It shows that 92% of the first generation of students who benefit from free higher education continue their studies in a higher education institution.

- China

The Ministry of Education has published the National Standard for Assessing the Quality of Teaching in Undergraduate Programs Offered by Regular Higher Education Institutions (“the Standard”), the first standard in China aimed at improving the quality of teaching and training in China’s higher education institutions.

- France

Masters completion rates
The Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation figures of students enrolled in a Masters degree in French universities in 2016-2017 show that 50% of students graduate in two years.

Work-based learning in higher education
The Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation has published a guidebook on work-based learning within higher education.

Erasmus +
The French Erasmus + Agency has published a report summarising the activities carried out by the agency from 2014 to 2016. It also provides an overview of opportunities provided by the Erasmus+ programme for higher education institutions.

- Germany

Coalition agreement of the German Government
The German Rector’s Conference (HRK) president, Horst Hippler, issued a statement on the coalition agreement of the German Government in February, stressing the importance of progressive higher education policies and for the new Federal Government to be more involved in higher education, in particular funding.

-  Hong Kong

Consultation on Draft Revisions to Accreditation Standards
The Hong Kong Council for Accreditation of Academic and Vocational Qualifications (HKCAAVQ) has released the findings from the consultation on the Draft Revisions to Accreditation Standards under the Four-stage Quality Assurance Process. It includes the implementation plan for the revised accreditation standards.

- Ireland

Intellectual property
The Higher Education Authority (HEA) and Knowledge Transfer Ireland (KTI) have published the Review of Intellectual Property Management and Conflicts of Interest, which provides a framework for strengthening IP policies and procedures in higher education institutions.

Graduate employment
The Higher Education Authority (HEA) and the Central Statistics Office have published Higher Education Outcomes which analyses the employment outcomes and earnings of 2010 - 2014 graduates. It shows that 76% of 2014 graduates were in substantial employment in the first year after graduation, up from 66% for 2010 graduates.

- Israel

’Ariel bill’
The Israeli parliament, the Knesset, has passed the ‘Ariel bill’ which extends the authority of the Israeli Council for Higher Education over higher education institutions in the West Bank.

- Japan

Increase of investment in science and technology
Investment in science and technology will increase by 7% to 3.84 trillion yen (EUR 29 billion) in 2018 compared with 2017, the government’s science advisory body, the Council for Science, Technology and Innovation (CSTI) announced on 30 January.

- Morocco

Improvement of material resources and educational conditions for university students
The Prime Minister, Saad Eddine El Othmani, announced on 5 February that more than MAD 70 billion (6.1 billion EUR) has been allocated to improve material resources and educational conditions for university students. He presented several measures that have been adopted for upgrading public university infrastructure and renovating facilities and also stated that 700 vacant positions in institutions will be filled in 2018. There is a planned increase of 20% of students accepted into institutions that have historically limited access or enrollment.

- New Zealand
The Ministry of Education of New Zealand has published three reports profiling students and graduates:

- South Africa
Fee-free higher education
The Finance Minister, Malusi Gigaba, announced in his budget speech on 21 February additional funding of 4 billion eurosover the next three years for the implementation of fee-free higher education in South Africa.

- Sweden
National strategy for internationalisation
The Swedish Government has released its proposals for a national strategy for internationalisation of higher education and research.

- United Kingdom

Funding review
The Prime Minister, Theresa May, announced an independent review of post-18 education tuition fees and university funding in England, on 19 February. The review will consider cutting interest rates on student loans, reintroducing maintenance grants, as well as examining the level of fees.

Research and Innovation roadmap
Sam Gyimah, Minister for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation, has announced the launch of the UKRI Research and Innovation Infrastructure Roadmap programme. The Roadmap will survey the state of the UK’s research and innovation infrastructure.

Students’ financial support - Wales
The Welsh Government announced a new student financial support package on 5 February. First time undergraduates from Wales will, from this September, benefit from the equivalent to the National Living Wage through a mix of non-repayable grants and loans.

- United States

Education budget
The US Government’s 2019 budget proposal contains a major reduction in higher education funding. It proposes cutting over $200 billion in student aid funding over the next decade by eliminating some types of federal student loans; changing the loan repayment safety net; and ending forgiveness for borrowers who work in the public sector.

Student health - California
The California senate passed bill SB320 which would require, from January 2022, public university student health centers to offer abortion by medication.

Digital credentials
The Center for Studies in Higher Education at the University of Berkeley has released a research paper on Alternative Digital Credentials (ADCs). The paper details how digital records of students’ skills and competencies are replacing traditional university transcripts. It provides a proposed criteria, standards and implementation guidelines for ADCs within universities.

Public mission of higher education
A call for papers has been launched for the 15th International Workshop on Higher Education Reform organised by the Johns Hopkins University School of Education on 24 - 26 September 2018 that will address the theme Reinventing the Public Mission of Higher Education: Policies and Practice. Deadline for submission of abstracts: 30 March 2018.

- Zimbabwe

Skills audit
Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Minister Professor Amon Murwira has announced that the government is conducting a national skills audit of public higher education institutions and private firms to be used as the basis of national curriculum development.

Graduate database
The Zimbabwe Information and Communication Technologies (ZICT) is developing a national database of degree holders. This initiative came after a surge of fraudulent or questionable degrees appeared on the market.

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Former Editions
IAU Lynx February Edition

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