- Russia: Job Cuts in Moscow State Uni
- India: Policy change suggested
- Graduate Employment: Grievance of International Students
- Australia: Universities need long-term vision
Russia’s education minister on Thursday ordered an investigation following complaints about massive layoffs at the country’s most venerable and respected university. As of Monday, 46 employees of the Lomonosov Moscow State University had signed up to an open appeal to President Vladimir Putin, who is also the chairman of the university’s board of trustees, asking him to stop the ongoing staff reduction.The authors of the appeal, most whom work in the university’s natural sciences departments, say jobs are being cut to comply with a recent presidential decree to raise lecturers’ salaries.In line with the initiative, MSU Rector Viktor Sadovnichy has issued an order to raise average monthly salaries up to around 65,000 rubles ($2,000) this year.
“While some form of governance was essential, it is our hope that the tweaking of the policy framework will encourage foreign universities to set up their campuses in the country,” said minister of state for HRD, Shashi Tharoor, while speaking about Indian education scenario. He was addressing the ‘9th FICCI Higher Education Summit 2013’ on the theme ‘Building Networks for Transforming Indian Higher Education’ on Wednesday.Tharoor also urged the Indian private sector to come forward in a big way to fund research and development programmes of Indian universities. He stated that research is the key to enhancing the quality of higher education institutions, an area which has remained neglected as most of the Indian universities are still primarily teaching institutions. He also mentioned that in India, the government invests around 80% in research and development, where as in the OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries and developed West, almost 75% of the investment in R&D is from the private sector.
International students perceive Canada, the USA and Australia as the best study destinations for graduate employment opportunities according to the latest IDP Buyer Behaviour Research. However, according to the poll produced by the Australia-based student recruitment network, employment factors are still less than satisfactory across all top recipient countries.The US and UK have the highest perceived level of quality in education while Canada and New Zealand are viewed as the most affordable.“In terms of the experience of studying, generally, Australia, Canada, USA and UK meet students’ expectations, including the key driver – quality of education,” said Lyndell Jacka, Head of Research at IDP Education.“It is the economic and employment factors where the experience is less than satisfactory. Satisfaction with affordability, ability to work part-time and employment opportunities after graduation were lower than expectations for all countries rated.”
Australia needs to develop a strategic higher education plan in order to remain internationally competitive, according to vice-chancellors who met in Sydney recently. International rankings and reputation were high on the agenda when the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) brought tertiary education leaders together to discuss future directions. Vice-chancellor at the University of Sydney Michael Spence, who spoke at the event, said a long-term strategic vision for research and innovation was needed to ensure Australian universities did not drop further in the global rankings. He said it was important to maintain support for university research and to provide institutions with the funding certainty needed to build critical mass and quality.