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Postdoc leader sought

Executive director of US postdoctoral association steps down.

 

Cathee Johnson Phillips, executive director of the US National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) in Washington DC, will step down on 30 April. The NPA's board of directors has launched a nationwide search and hopes to hire a new leader before she leaves. (...) - Naturejobs, Nature 492, 459 (2012), 19 December 2012

 

 

 

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Higher Education and academic research
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Japan: Government selects 37 ‘global universities’

Japan’s Education Ministry has said it will help finance the globalisation and personnel training programmes of 37 universities in the country, including the University of Tokyo, to strengthen their international competitiveness, reports Jiji Press.

The selection of the 37 schools as ‘global universities’ comes after the Education Rebuilding Implementation Council set the goal of having at least 10 Japanese universities in the list of the world’s top 100. Applications were submitted by 104 universities. (...) - University World News, by Jiji Press, 03 October 2014 Issue No:337

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How do we assess the impact of internationalisation?

In a world of increasing fiscal constraints, discourses that emphasise measuring impact continue to gain traction.

Most recently, the Scaling Social Impact series by Harvard Business Review and The Bridgespan Group focuses on how organisations can have a greater social impact. In the same vein, the Stanford Social Innovation Reviewalso has a special section on innovative ways to measure an organisation’s impact on various populations. (...) - University World News, by Rahul Choudaha and Bernhard Streitwieser, 03 October 2014 Issue No:337

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Denmark: Minister cuts 4,000 study places with low job prospects

Late last month Danish Minister of Higher Education and Science, Sofie Carsten Nielsen, announced that the number of students admitted to degrees with poor job prospects would be slashed by 4,000 within three years – prompting heated public debate.

On 24 September, in a long opinion article in Politiken, Nielsen wrote that no student should end up “unusable. Higher education has to relate more to the needs of the workforce.” (...) - University World News, by Jan Petter Myklebust, 03 October 2014 Issue No:337

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Germany increases size of student grants

Germany increases size of student grants | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Students in Germany will be eligible for significantly improved benefits and subsidies from the start of the 2016-17 academic year.

The changes, announced in August and described by the federal Education Ministry as "substantial,” will raise the monthly ceiling on the Bafög(a support package that is 50 percent grant, 50 percent means-tested loan) from €670 ($884) to €735 ($926). Rent subsidies and child benefits will also go up. (...) - @insidehighered, by Frances Mechan-Schmidt for Times Higher Education, October 2, 2014

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Battle between NSF and House science committee escalates: How did it get this bad?

Battle between NSF and House science committee escalates: How did it get this bad? | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Staffers get an unprecedented look at confidential material; ranking Democrat lobs new criticism at panel chair.

 

Four times this past summer, in a spare room on the top floor of the headquarters of the National Science Foundation (NSF) outside of Washington, D.C., two congressional staffers spent hours poring over material relating to 20 research projects that NSF has funded over the past decade. Each folder contained confidential information that included the initial application, reviewer comments on its merit, correspondence between program officers and principal investigators, and any other information that had helped NSF decide to fund the project. (...) - by Jeffrey Mervis, Science, 02/10/2014

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Pétition: 5000 chercheurs belges s'inquiètent de la 6ème réforme

Pétition: 5000 chercheurs belges s'inquiètent de la 6ème réforme | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Une pétition de 5000 personnes a été signée, notamment, par le Prix Nobel de physique, François Englert. Elle a été remise hier -mardi- au formateur et premier Ministre pressenti, Charles Michel. Ces scientifiques se disent inquiets par le transfert aux communautés des pôles d'attraction inter-universitaires (PAI). En clair, les travaux gérés et organisés conjointement par des universités francophones et flamandes. (...) - - RTBF Belgique, 01/10/2014

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UK: Top universities battling for students

UK: Top universities battling for students | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Anna Fazackerley: Members of the Russell Group have offered free flights, film passes and even bedding to woo high-achievers. (...) - By Anna Fazackerley, The Guardian, 30 September 2014

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Côte d’Ivoire: la colère des étudiants face au manque d’équipement

Côte d’Ivoire: la colère des étudiants face au manque d’équipement | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

A Abidjan, il y avait un parfum de gaz lacrymogènes lundi 29 septembre au matin sur le campus universitaire Houphouët-Boigny. Un millier d’étudiants en sciences physiques et chimie ont fait part de leur mécontentement concernant le peu d’équipement dont ils disposent pour achever leur cursus. (...) - RFI, 30/09/2014

 

 

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Open Access and the Public Purse

Last year, we were introduced to a “Draft Tri-Agency Open Access Policy,” put forward by NSERC and SSHRC to harmonize their requirements with the CIHR. Under this policy, all peer-reviewed journal articles based on research funded by these councils must be made available through Open Access (OA), free and online. Researchers could either publish in a journal that is OA or has OA options, or deposit the article in an OA repository within twelve months of publication. There is much to applaud here, particularly for those of us who have long supported OA as a means of making our work more widely available to international research communities that cannot afford increasingly high journal subscription fees or Canadians who are not physically within reach of a university library. (...) - Academic Matters, by Julia M. Wright, July 28th, 2014

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Germany: All universities now free of charge

All German universities will be free of charge when term starts next week after fees were abandoned in Lower Saxony, the last of seven states to charge, reports The Times.

“Tuition fees are socially unjust,” said Dorothee Stapelfeldt, senator for science in Hamburg, which scrapped charges in 2012. “They particularly discourage young people who do not have a traditional academic family background from taking up studies. It is a core task of politics to ensure that young women and men can study with a high quality standard free of charge in Germany.” (...) - The Times via University World News,26 September 2014 Issue No:336

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Higher education and the post-2015 development goals – UNESCO

In a new briefing report, UNESCO has identified tertiary education as a fundamental element towards progress in each of 16 proposed post-2015 global sustainable development goals.

According to the report (http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0022/002296/229603E.pdf), Sustainable Development Post-2015 Begins with Education, higher education is intertwined with the suggested global development targets that will replace the current United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals when they expire next year. (...) - University World News, by Wachira Kigotho, 26 September 2014,  Issue No:336

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[Austria] University leaders concerned over lack of funding

University leaders in Austria are urging the government to provide higher education and research with extra funding. They are above all concerned that without extra support, the country could fail to keep pace with international developments.

Universities Austria, or uniko, representing the heads of the country’s public higher education institutions, has called on the government to “invest in the country’s intellectual infrastructure”. (...) - University World News, by Michael Gardner,26 September 2014 Issue No:336

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[France] Student success a priority, but HE has funding fears

n the wake of criticism from university presidents over lack of resources, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, the new national education, higher education and research minister, and Geneviève Fioraso, secretary of state for higher education and research, defended their budget and promised priority for ensuring student success during the academic year that is just beginning.

A total of 2,466,500 students are starting the new year, an increase of 1.5% over last year. (...) - University World News, by Jane Marshall, 25/09/2014

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Toutes les universités allemandes sont désormais gratuites

Toutes les universités allemandes sont désormais gratuites | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Le monde se partage entre deux concepts de l’université : l’un qui impose un minerval astronomique (essentiellement les pays anglo-saxons) et l’autre qui se contente de sommes symboliques par rapport au coût réel d’un étudiant universitaire pour la collectivité. (...) - RTBF, 03/10/2014

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Visualizing World Article Production

Visualizing World Article Production | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

The world production of scientific literature continues to grow, at an annual rate of 2.8% per year, according to the 2014 edition of the National Science Foundation’s Science and Engineering Indicators. The growth rate for each country varies considerably, however.

Between 2001 and 2011, China’s global share of articles rose from 3% to 11%. Brazil and India’s global share also grew by about 1%. In contrast, the United States’ share dropped from 30% to 26%, and Japan’s share fell from 9% to 6%. (...) - by Phil Davies, Scholarly Kitchen, October 3, 2014

 

 

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[US] Fountain of youth: A congressman's plan to make NIH grantees younger

[US] Fountain of youth: A congressman's plan to make NIH grantees younger | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Representative Andy Harris (R–MD) wants to require agency to find ways to lower age of first grant.

 

A member of Congress has waded into the thorny issue of the graying of U.S. biomedical researchers with a radical solution: He wants to order the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to bring down the average age at which new investigators receive their first grant by 4 years within a decade. Not surprisingly, the idea is getting a rocky reception from biomedical research advocates. (...) - by Jocelyn Kaiser, Science, 6 October 2014

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New rankings system from LinkedIn based on employment outcomes of a huge sample

New rankings system from LinkedIn based on employment outcomes of a huge sample | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

LinkedIn has officially joined the jam-packed college rankings party. And with 313 million users, the job networking site has a big data sample both for creating the rankings and for marketing them.

The new ranking system tracks the success of college graduates in eight broad career paths, adding weight for jobs deemed “desirable.” It lists the top 25 institutions in each career category. (...) - by Paul Fain, @insidehighered, October 2, 214

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Why does Switzerland do so well in university rankings?

Why does Switzerland do so well in university rankings? | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Investing heavily in research and science has helped Switzerland move up the rankings. But as Kim Thomas explains, rankings don’t tell the whole story. (...) - by Kim Thomas, The Guardian, 1 October 2014

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One big problem with open access and why the best way to fix it isn't going to work - Curt Rice

One big problem with open access and why the best way to fix it isn't going to work - Curt Rice | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

A recent Wall Street report declares the death of open access. What can we learn from their analysis?

 

There’s a conflict, a tension, an inherent contradiction in the open access movement, and while it could be resolved, that seems increasingly unlikely.

The inconsistency goes like this: the shift to open access publishing started idealistically, with enthusiasm and pressure from the grassroots. The business model for disseminating scientific results would be changed. Instead of putting research into journals that were expensive and exclusive, we would make articles available for free. No charge at all. Ready to be downloaded by anyone with an internet connection. (...) - by Curt Rice, 30/09/2014

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Want to be taken seriously as scholar in the humanities? Publish a monograph

Want to be taken seriously as scholar in the humanities? Publish a monograph | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

A survey shows the monograph is still central for shaping and sharing scholarship in the humanities. Let’s now make them open access.

 

A decade ago, in my first year as lecturer in a humanities department, an eminent professor helped me secure a book contract with a top university press for my recently completed doctoral thesis.

Another senior colleague stopped me in the corridor: “This is very rare,” she said. “And this is what gets you ahead in this game.”

The book itself is a lovely object, of which I’m still very proud (it took me four years of doctoral research, plus another two years of preparation). It only sold a few hundred copies: enough to make the press happy, and to give me annual royalties of a fiver. There is an ebook, comparable in price to the physical version, but no open-access version. (...) - by Melissa Terras, 30/09/2014

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E.U. research chief candidate passes first test

E.U. research chief candidate passes first test | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Portugal's Carlos Moedas pledges to work as science's "torchbearer" and professes love of Europe.

 

BRUSSELS—Carlos Moedas, the commissioner-designate for research, has won over European parliamentarians in a public hearing here today. A former secretary of state in Portugal with no research policy background, Moedas came across as competent and well-prepared—but the plans he presented for his possible 5-year term remain vague, observers say. (...) - by Tania Rabesandratana, Science, 30 September 2014

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How to survive going to university in London

How to survive going to university in London | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Are you starting a degree at a London uni? Are friends at other unis already having more fun? Fear not. There are huge advantages to being a student in the capital. (...) - by Tess Reidy, The Guardian, 27/09/2014

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Progress, problems with researcher mobility in Europe

There has been significant progress in alleviating obstacles to mobility for researchers in Europe – but advances have been uneven and challenges remain in some countries in the areas of recruitment, researcher skills, working conditions and career opportunities – says a Deloitte Consulting report prepared for the European Commission.

The third annual report of a three-year study includes for the first time a composite index of European Union research excellence compared with that of other major economies, which it says can be seen as a proxy for the attractiveness of Europe for researchers. (...) - University World News, by Karen MacGregor, 26 September 2014, Issue No:336

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Projet Minerva : le futur de l'Université ?

Projet Minerva : le futur de l'Université ? | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Le numérique bouleverse l'éducation. Avec l'explosion des nouvelles technologies, les méthodes d'apprentissage évoluent, et l'ingénierie pédagogique traditionnelle en est profondément impactée. Coursera, EdX, Khan Academy, Udacity : le phénomène des MOOC - ces cours ouverts et massifs d'envergure internationale - n'a pas fini de faire couler de l'encre, et nous avons plusieurs fois traité le sujet dans les lignes du Bulletin Electronique. (...) - BE Etats-Unis 379, Les Bulletins Electroniques des Ambassades de France, 2014/09/26 

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Les États-Unis déjà dans l'après-Mooc

Les États-Unis déjà dans l'après-Mooc | Higher Education and academic research | Scoop.it

Aux États-Unis, on parle beaucoup moins des Mooc qu'il y a deux ans. Ils continuent pourtant de bouleverser l'enseignement supérieur américain. Tour d'horizon des questions qui... (...) - EducPros, Jessica Gourdon, 25.09.2014

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