03 janvier 2017

In an age of anti-science social scientists can help fight climate data denial

By Brendan O’Malley – Managing Editor. In Commentary, Victoria Herrmann says in an age of anti-science, with US President-elect Donald Trump calling climate change a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese, it is more important than ever for social scientists to be part of climate science research because climate change is ultimately a story about people. Phillip L Clay of MIT presents the case and a pilot model for the transformation of higher education in Africa, calling for the creating of clusters of new universities that are “uncompromisingly excellent, independent and globally partnered”. And Bruno Morche suggests that political developments such as rising nationalism in the West could be a valuable opportunity for the BRICS countries to expand their presence in the global higher education arena.
The Transformative Leadership series in which University World News is partnering with The MasterCard Foundation, forms a supplement with a focus on innovation. Sharon Dell reports on the call by Professor Alvaro Romo, secretary general of the International Association of University Presidents, for universities to harness innovation in pursuit of sustainable development, underpinned by the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Arif Naveed says universities in Pakistan are implicated in perpetuating inequalities and need to rise above the traditional role of teaching and learning and contribute to social innovation by informing public policies that promote social justice. And Paulo Savaget and Cleonir Tumelero applaud Brazil’s track record in developing eco-innovation, with universities playing a large role, but are concerned that recent political and economic turmoil will put this work at risk.
In our World Blog, Patrick Blessinger says that understanding education as a human right provides the moral and legal basis for inclusion and diversity in education at all levels.
Lastly, in Features, Wagdy Sawahel reports on a study saying women researchers in North Africa represent 36.5% of the total number of researchers in six countries in the region, which is above the world, European and developed country averages, while Maria Elena Hurtado reports that the quality of Chile’s higher education is improving but there are problems not being addressed by government reforms currently under discussion. Read more...

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