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Losses for UK and US as the East's excellence drives start to bear fruit.
Outside the elite Golden Triangle of Oxbridge and London, the relative performance of the UK's research-intensive universities is slipping, analysis of the 2012-13 Times Higher Education World University Rankings shows. (...) - by Elizabeth Gibney, Times Higher Education, 3 October 2012
Via Collectif PAPERA
This paper examines the evolution of the entrepreneurship education initiative of a single research-intensive institution—the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom—and the ways in which that initiative has or has not contributed to the broader entrepreneurial and commercial engagement objectives of the university. The Manchester case suggests that research-intensive universities wishing to bring entrepreneurship education and knowledge commercialisation and commodification into effective and beneficial alignment—that is, in a broader model of the “entrepreneurial university” than characterizes conventional thinking today—face significant challenges that require determined strategies to overcome.
Source: Edward Feser. 2012. "Entrepreneurship education in the research-intensive entrepreneurial university" Working paper
Following up on recommendations to make more research freely available to scientists and the public, the U.K. government today pledged £10 million toward making scientific papers open access. The funding will help 30 research-intensive universities develop open access policies and pay the author fees charged by publishers to make a paper more freely available to the public. Paul Nurse, president of the Royal Society, welcomed the investment in a statement:
It is good news that the Government has managed to find an additional £10 million to help aid the transition to open access publishing of publicly funded science. The move towards making research results as widely available as possible is the right thing to do but it will take time. It will be important that during the transition years funds are not drained from actual research and this £10million is a step in the right direction.
-by John Travis, ScienceInsider 7 September 2012
Via Julien Hering, PhD
LARN will be the first research network on language assessment in the world that brings together research-intensive universities at this scale. The member institutions will collaborate on a wide range of research areas, practices and outreach in the study of language assessment, which requires expertise in linguistics, statistics, psychology, psychometrics, human learning and instruction, and assessment technologies, just to name a few. According to estimates, nearly 4 million students are enrolled in universities and colleges outside of their home country, with 42 percent enrolled in major English-speaking countries. China is the leading country of origin for international students, with the number of Chinese students rising substantially in recent years.
Via Nicos Sifakis
The League of European Research Universities (LERU) makes new recommendations for the development of a more effective and efficient European Research Area (ERA).
My view: There is some attention for Knowledge Transfer (KT), but it is not sufficiently 'impactelligent' and impact driven to become a major innovation force.
LERU: Key points in Knowledge Transfer:
LERU: Conditions for effective Knowledge Transfer:
Fulltext report: http://www.leru.org/files/publications/LERU_AP9_ERA.pdf
We investigate how university governance affects research output, measured by patenting and international university research rankings. For both European and U.S. universities, we generate several measures of autonomy, governance, and competition for research funding. We show that university autonomy and competition are positively correlated with university output, both among European countries and among U.S. public universities. We then identity a (political) source of exogenous shocks to funding of U.S. universities. We demonstrate that, when a state's universities receive a positive funding shock, they produce more patents if they are more autonomous and face more competition from private research universities. Finally, we show that during periods when merit-based competitions for federal research funding have been most prominent, universities produce more patents when they receive an exogenous funding shock, suggesting that routine participation in such competitions hones research skill.
by Philippe Aghion, Mathias Dewatripont, Caroline Hoxby, Andreu Mas-Colell, Andre Sapir :: SSRN, 2009
European universities need to think global, says Commission
The international higher education landscape is changing dramatically in shape and size, with greater competition from countries such as China and India. This calls for an overhaul in the way Europe's 4 000 universities operate - not only internationally, but also in how they deliver education to European students in their home countries. Today, the European Commission launches a new strategy, 'European higher education in the world', aiming to ensure European graduates gain the international skills they need to work anywhere in the world and that Europe remains the most attractive destination for international students. Erasmus+, the new EU programme for education, training, youth and sport, will allocate more than €400 million a year to support international student exchanges and increased cooperation between European universities and their partners worldwide.
Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, said: "European universities need to think global. They must act strategically to capitalise on Europe's reputation for top quality higher education. They need to promote international mobility of students and staff, provide world-class innovative curricula, as well as excellence in teaching and research. While many European universities have good links inside the EU, many lack a clear strategy for strengthening ties with non-European partners. This urgently needs to change. The Commission will support Member States so that they can develop their international higher education networks. There is no one-size-fits-all model for this: countries need to play to their strengths."
Via Dr Vangelis Tsiligiris
Soil bacteria known as rhizobia are able to establish an endosymbiosis with legumes that takes place in neoformed nodules in which intracellularly hosted bacteria fix nitrogen. Intracellular accommodation that facilitates nutrient exchange between the two partners and protects bacteria from plant defense reactions has been a major evolutionary step towards mutualism. Yet the forces that drove the selection of the late event of intracellular infection during rhizobium evolution are unknown. To address this question, we took advantage of the previous conversion of the plant pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum into a legume-nodulating bacterium that infected nodules only extracellularly. We experimentally evolved this draft rhizobiuminto intracellular endosymbionts using serial cycles of legume-bacterium cocultures. The three derived lineages rapidly gained intracellular infection capacity, revealing that the legume is a highly selective environment for the evolution of this trait. From genome resequencing, we identified in each lineage a mutation responsible for the extracellular-intracellular transition. All three mutations target virulence regulators, strongly suggesting that several virulence-associated functions interfere with intracellular infection. We provide evidence that the adaptive mutations were selected for their positive effect on nodulation. Moreover, we showed that inactivation of the type three secretion system of R. solanacearum that initially allowed the ancestral draft rhizobium to nodulate, was also required to permit intracellular infection, suggesting a similar checkpoint for bacterial invasion at the early nodulation/root infection and late nodule cell entry levels. We discuss our findings with respect to the spread and maintenance of intracellular infection in rhizobial lineages during evolutionary times.
Guan SH, Gris C, Cruveiller S, Pouzet C, Tasse L, Leru A, Maillard A, Médigue C, Batut J, Masson-Boivin C, Capela D (2013). ISME J. Feb 21. doi: 10.1038/ismej.2013.24. [Epub ahead of print]
20 April 2012
Via Charles Tiayon
Hoping it can help Europe to conquer the economic crisis and to secure Europe’s future position in the global economy, EU policy makers clearly aim for innovation. On different occasions the League of European Research Universities (LERU) has emphasized the particular role universities play in the innovation process. Crucial for that role are the universities’ technology transfer offices, whose functioning is investigated in LERU’s new advice paper The TTO, a university engine transforming science in innovation.
In a first part the paper focusses on the role and relevance of the TTO in academia. It presents a model of three stage development, from TTOs as isolated islands of technology transfer activity within the university (stage 1) to an inclusive TTO operation operating across the research, teaching and innovation dimensions of the knowledge triangle (stage 3). “It is clear”, says Koen Debackere, Executive Director of KU Leuven Research & Development and author of the paper, “that strong and unambiguous university leadership support is critical to the continuous growth and development of a professional TTO operation.”
In a second part of the paper the governance and organisation of the TTO are analysed. Governance aspects such as autonomy are crucial for the TTO to develop its activities successfully. Finally ten critical success factors (CSF) for an effective TTO operation are identified. They focus on the degree of autonomy of the TTO from the university and the mandate a TTO might need to operate in its region to build an effective spin-out operation, but also on the need for a supportive external environment. Other CSFs set out the incentives and code of conduct schemes TTOs can install for the academic community and give recommendations for TTO staff, the internal organisation of the office and the position of the TTO in the university.
The League of European Research Universities (LERU) is as an association of leading research-intensive universities that share the values of high-quality teaching within an environment of internationally competitive research.
The focus of this report is to examine the ways in which universities can achieve successful outreach, highlighting current effective strategies that can be used and the challenges faced in engaging stakeholders of all ages and interests in the research and teaching activities of the university.
The Ulab Project, “European Laboratory for modelling the technical research University of tomorrow”, is an innovative think-tank of five leading Technical and Research-intensive European Universities, committed to work together to renew University policies in research, valorisation, entrepreneurship and outreach..
Project title European Laboratory for Modelling the Technical Research University of Tomorrow
Call identifier FP7-SCIENCE-IN-SOCIETY-2010-UNIV Funding Scheme Coordination and Support Action Document ID Document reference D5.1
Title Best Practices on Outreach Due Date 30th September 2011 Delivery Date 13th October 2011 Document Author/s Monica Bulger, William Dutton, and Rebecca Eynon Document Reviewer David Sutcliffe Version 1.0 Dissemination level Public Abstract This document reports on current practices, difficulties and challenges for the future on Outreach (or Public Engagement) for European Universities and compiles different best practices of Ulab partners on these activities.
A new working paper from the OECD looks at Strengthening Innovation in the United States. According to the abstract: The US innovation system has many strengths, including world class research universities and firms that thrive in innovation-intensive sectors. However, fissures have begun to appear, notably in the areas of...
In Europe, aquaculture accounts for about 20% of fish production and directly employs some 70 000 people. EU overall output has been more or less constant in volume since 2000 whereas global production has been growing at nearly 7% per year. Concerning the products, EU aquaculture production is renowned for its high quality, sustainability and consumer protection standards. The excellent quality of EU seafood should constitute a major competitive advantage for EU aquaculture; however, European aquaculture is stagnating by contrast with increasing rates of aquaculture production at world level and, in particular, in Asia.
The European Commission tried to boost the sector through the Common Fisheries Policy Reform and last year published Strategic Guidelines presenting common priorities and general objectives at EU level. Four priority areas have been identified in consultation with all relevant stakeholders: reducing administrative burdens, improving access to space and water, increasing competitiveness, exploiting competitive advantages due to high quality, health and environmental standards.
This keysource gathers information about aquaculture in Europe. You will find an overview of the sector in the first part, followed by a selection of analysis, some EU country files, the stakeholders’ views about the future of the sector and statistics and other useful information in the last part.
EC fisheries webpage dedicated to aquaculture / European Commission
EP fact sheet / European Parliament
Strategic guidelines for aquaculture in the EU / EPRS briefing, Sarah Sheil, 2013, 6 p.
The Economic Performance of the EU Aquaculture Sector (STECF – 13-29) / STECF, JRC Scientific and Policy Reports, 2013, 383 p.
Summary of the 2013 Economic Performance Report on the EU Aquaculture Sector (STECF 13-30) / STECF, JRC Scientific and Policy Reports, 2013, 54 p.
European Aquaculture Production Report 2003-2012 / Federation of European Aquaculture Producers (FEAP), 2013, 52 p.
European Aquaculture competitiveness: limitations and possible strategies / Directorate-General for Internal Policies, Policy Department B Structural and Cohesion Policies, Fisheries, 2009, 136 p.
Regulatory and legal constraints for European Aquaculture / Directorate-General for Internal Policies, Policy Department B Structural and Cohesion Policies, Fisheries, 2009, 97 p.
National Aquaculture Sector Overview (NASO) Fact Sheets / FAO.
France (2012 – updated version in FR)
Spain (2012 – updated version in ES)
Science in support of the European fisheries and aquaculture policy /Strategic Working Group on Fisheries and Aquaculture (SCAR-Fish), 2013, 35 p.
The Future of European Aquaculture / European Aquaculture Technology and Innovation Platform (EATiP), 2012, 41 p.
Key topics for scientific support to the European aquaculture strategy / European Fisheries and Aquaculture Research Organisations (EFARO), 2013, 12 p.
Agriculture, forestry and fishery statistics 2013 edition / Eurostat pocketbooks, 2013, 249 p.
The chapter 8 is dedicated to fisheries, on p. 215-228. The aquaculture part is on pages 225-226.
Fishery statistics Data 1995-2008 / Eurostat pocketbooks, 2010, 56 p.
The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture – 2012 / FAO, 2012, 209 p.
FAO yearbook. Fishery and Aquaculture Statistics. 2011/ FAO annuaire. Statistiques des pêches et de l’aquaculture. 2011 /FAO anuario. Estadísticas de pesca y acuicultura. 2011 / FAO, 2013, 76 p.
Aquaculture in motion 2013 / FEAP, November 2013
The future of European Aquaculture / EATiP, Octobre 2012
Advancing the Aquaculture Agenda Workshop Proceedings, OECD, 2010, 428 p.
Workshop on Advancing the Aquaculture Agenda, 15-16 April 2010, OECD.
Working for a well-informed European Parliament: http://epthinktank.eu/2014/04/16/aquaculture-in-the-eu/ ;
FOTO: © il-fede / Fotolia
Via Αλιεία alieia.info
Research institutions opt out of European Union's rankings scheme.
Members of the League of European Research Universities (LERU) do not plan to support the U-Multirank university ranking system launched last month by the European Union (see Nature 494, 273; 2013). LERU, which is based in Leuven, Belgium, and represents 21 universities across the continent, objects to what it calls a lack of reliable and objectively verifiable data in U-Multirank, problems in comparing institutions between countries, the temptation for universities to change policies or practices to improve their rankings and the burden on universities to collect data, says Kurt Deketelaere, secretary-general of the league. He says that such problems plague all existing university ranking systems, and notes that LERU pulled out of a U-Multirank advisory group in 2010 because its concerns were not addressed. “Since then, we have not seen any evidence of a substantive change of course which could lead us to revisit that decision,” says Deketelaere. Individual member universities can still participate in the programme if they choose, he says, but he notes that none has opted to join so far. -
Via Collectif PAPERA
The annual ERC report contains a very selective performance list containing organisations hosting at least 25 ERC Principal Investigators by funding scheme. Only 3 Dutch universities are able to perform in this high level of top grants: Leiden University, University of Amsterdam and Radboud University Nijmegen.
In the previous list in the ERC annual report 2011containing organisations hosting at least 15 ERC Principal Investigators by funding scheme, 6 Dutch universities were listed.
In the previous list in the ERC annual report 2010 containing organisations hosting at least 10 ERC Principal Investigators by funding scheme, 5 Dutch universities were listed.
Annual report ERC 2012: http://erc.europa.eu/sites/default/files/document/file/erc_annual_report_2012.pdf
The League of European Research Universities (LERU) has launched two statements on the importance of Open Scholarship: ‘Open Access to Research Publications’ and ‘Open Research Data’.
Download the LERU statement on Open Access to Research Publications
Download the LERU statement on Open Research Data
Via Julien Hering, PhD