By Lucie Cerna, Analyst, Directorate for Education and Skills. Trust is the glue that holds societies together. It is essential for most social and economic relations. Since the beginning of the economic crisis, OECD countries have been under pressure to restore trust in their institutions, especially in their governments. In a 2013 Gallup Poll, the average trust in government across OECD countries was only 42%. But there is also some good news. Citizens retain a high level of trust in their education systems (67%), health care (69%) and local police (72%) though trust levels vary across countries. The OECD’s New Approaches to Economic Challenges and the forthcoming Trust Strategy both seek to guide member states on how to rebuild trust in their institutions in a post-crisis world. Read more...
Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) has released the latest edition of its Best Student Cities rankings. These combine data in five categories:
Rankings which includes the number of universities in the QS World University Rankings and their overall scores in the rankings;
Student Mix comprising the number of students as a percentage of the city’s population, the number of international students at ranked institutions and their percentage of the student body and a tolerance and inclusion score based on the Social Progress Index;
Desirability, which used to be called “quality of living”, composed of a liveability index from the Economist, a globalization and world cities index from the University of Loughborough, and scores for safety, based on an inverted crime index, pollution and corruption;
Employer Activity based on data from the QS survey of domestic and international employers in the World University Rankings;
Affordability which includes indicators based on tuition fees, the Big Mac Index, the iPad index and the Mercer Cost of Living Index.
The top six are:
5= Hong Kong
A new report from the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and Ernst and Young (EY) has presented a vision of a world class university system but notes the grim realities of the present.
Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry: Press Release. More...
Times Higher Education (THE) announced yesterday that it will overhaul its World University Rankings. The magazine has ended its five-year partnership with data suppliers Thomson Reuters and will now use data from the Scopus database and the SciVal research analytics tool. The changes will also apply to the various offshoots such as the Asian University Rankings, the THE 100 under 50, the THE Reputation Rankings and the BRICS and Emerging Economies Rankings.
Times Higher Education
The new Nature Index suggests that an emphasis on universities may exaggerate American research prowess. Research institutes such as the Spanish National Research Council and the Russian Academy of Sciences are very productive. The Index measures contributions to 68 top journals in the natural sciences. It is published by Nature Publishing Group and Digital Science and its contents were selected by panels of scientists headed by John Morton of University College London and Yin-Biao Sun of King’s College London and then confirmed by a survey.
Nature Publishing Group Press Release
Nature Index. More...
8th EUA-CDE Workshop - Regional Engagement and Doctoral Education hosted by Aix-Marseille University - 22-23 January 2015
8th EUA-CDE Workshop - Regional Engagement and Doctoral Education
Hosted by Aix-Marseille University, Marseille, France - 22-23 January 2015
Universities have the potential to play a key part in developing their regions, and many of them already do. Universities ensure local employers have a pool of candidates with the right skills and make sure that knowledge is circulated between universities, private companies and the public sector.
Doctoral education combines these elements of human resources development and knowledge transfer. Doctorate holders sustain or further develop research capacity within universities as researchers, but also in a number of other positions outside academia. Moreover, the research carried out by doctoral candidates can often directly benefit regional development. They work in collaboration with local industries, they provide knowledge to regional authorities and they add to the research expertise and capacity of the region. This close connection between doctoral education and the regions has gained importance as EU structural funds have become directed towards projects in research and innovation.
How do universities manage their regional role? What initiatives do they take, and how do they establish a continuous dialogue with their regional authorities? These are the questions that the 8th Thematic Workshop of the EUA Council for Doctoral Education will attempt to answer in Marseille 22-23 January 2015. The workshop will present in-depth examples and good practices in regional engagement for inspiration and for discussion. More...
By Dirk Van Damme Head of the Innovation and Measuring Progress division, Directorate for Education and Skills. More than 40 years ago, the former French Prime Minister Edgar Faure and his team published one of the most influential educational works of the 20th century: “Learning to Be”, better known as the “Rapport Faure”, in which he mainstreamed the idea of lifelong learning. In Faure’s view, lifelong education was to become the leading educational policy principle for the future. Indeed, it became a powerful, evocative notion, nurturing dreams about “learning societies” in which people’s entire lives would be filled with opportunities to learn.
In the lifelong learning discourse, especially in its more optimistic variants in the late 20th century, there was a strong social equity argument. By creating more and better learning opportunities later in life, this argument went, the inequities in education that marked the first 25 years of a person’s life could be corrected or compensated for. A child’s schooling might be determined by his or her family background or economic and social capital; but missing out on educational opportunities early in life should not necessarily condemn individuals to be excluded from the benefits of learning later on. Second-chance or special education programmes that target low-schooled adults should ensure that providing access to education over a lifetime also results in a better redistribution of learning opportunities across society. Read more...