Monthly Archives: December 2009

Submissions focus on the weighting of impact in REF

Submissions focus on the weighting of impact in REF | Zoë Corbyn | Times Higher Education | 17 December 2009

Concern that 25% is too high is a theme among many of some 300 responses. Two key university mission groups whose opinions commonly divide the sector have converged to recommend a 15 per cent weighting for impact in the forthcoming research excellence framework.


Green power feasible

Green power feasible | Cheryl Jones | The Australian | 16 December, 2009

THE federal government has the opportunity to switch the nation’s power to renewable energy but favours attempts to make “dirty coal clean”, according to the Australian Academy of Science.

Next month the academy will call on the government to give priority support to geothermal and solar thermal energy to make them major national energy sources, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


Globe-Trotting Academics Find New Career Path

Globe-Trotting Academics Find New Career Paths | Robin Wilson | The Chronicle of Higher Education | 11 December, 2009

As a bright young doctoral student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Mary Kathryn Thompson was headed toward a job as an engineering professor at a top American university. But a conversation with a prominent professor at MIT changed that, virtually overnight.


Pedagogy a poor second in promotions

Pedagogy a poor second in promotions | Rebecca Attwood | Times Higher Education |  10 December 2009

Study finds ‘hypocritical’ sector fails to practise what it preaches. Universities stand accused of hypocrisy this week over their claims to value teaching, after a major study of promotions policy and practice found that many are still failing to reward academics for leadership in pedagogy.


Poor students top performers at elite unis

Poor students top performers at elite unis | Luke Slattery | The Australian Higher Education Supplement | 9 December, 2009

STUDENTS from poor backgrounds are less likely to attend the nation's prestige universities, but those who do are likelier to finish their degrees, according to a report by the Group of Eight. The report, released earlier this week, will inform a Go8 equity strategy that is being hammered out in response to the federal government's call for a boost in the proportion of undergraduates from low socioeconomic backgrounds to 20 per cent by 2020.


Harsh Economy Drives New Brand of Communication From the Top

Harsh Economy Drives New Brand of Communication From the Top | Kathryn Masterson | The Chronicle of Higher Education | 4 December, 2009

Emory University’s president, James Wagner, did not put a rosy spin on the first “Dear University” message he wrote discussing the economic crisis. For colleges the past year’s global economic crisis was much bigger—and wetter—than your typical financial downturn. It was, in the words of many a college leader, a “perfect storm,” a “financial hurricane,” an “unprecedented and uncharted economic whitewater”—even full-out “climate change.”

Metaphors like those turned up repeatedly in presidential messages about the economic crisis. In letters, videos, and blog posts, leaders told their communities that they were not immune to the turbulent financial storms roiling the world economy and that they must work together to weather the tempest.


Mergers, acquisitions and privatisation: law firm’s vision of future

Mergers, acquisitions and privatisation: law firm’s vision of future | Hannah Fearn | Times Higher Education | 3 December 2009

Report predicts that sector will ape commercial business practices. International mergers, creeping privatisation and new super-groupings of schools, further education colleges and universities will characterise the higher education sector in the coming decades, according to a report commissioned by Universities UK.


Campaign to merge MRIs under fire | The Australian

Campaign to merge MRIs under fire | Bernard Lane | The Australian Higher Education Supplement | 02 December, 2009

A CAMPAIGN by the Group of Eight universities to merge medical research institutes has been criticised as misleading and lacking in evidence. Bob Graham, president of the Association of Australian Medical Research Institutes, called on the Go8 to back up its claims that smaller institutions were at risk of failure.