U21:Connect - March 2015

04 March 2015
The latest news and items of interest to staff and students across the Universitas 21 network.

U21 news

U21 Ranking 2015 – save the date!

The U21 Ranking of National Higher Education Systems will be released, for the fourth time, on Thursday 21 May 2015 at 00:01 BST. The ranking meets a longstanding desire to shift discussion from the ranking of the world’s best universities, to the standing of the whole higher education system in each country, and has been developed as a benchmark for governments, education institutions and individuals.

Go to www.universitas21.com/link/rankings for more information.

Annual Review published online

U21:Review, the annual summary of network activity over the past year (November 2013 - October 2014) is now available for download from our website.

The review contains reports from all three main clusters of activity, Educational Innovation, Researcher Engagement and Student Experience, as well as commentary from the Chair and Secretary General, summaries of network news, reports from our Collaborations and a snapshot of the events to take place in the next U21 year (November 2014 - October 2015).

Download your copy now at www.universitas21.com/link/AnnualReview2013-14


Professional Services Forum dates announced

The next U21 Professional Service Forum (PSF) will be hosted by the University of Hong Kong on 2 and 3 October 2015. The PSF is an informal group which enables colleagues to share and exchange ideas and experiences and to improve practices in University administration. Details about the October meeting will be posted on the website as soon as they are available, but save the date!


U21:Connect available in Spanish & Chinese

Did you know that U21:Connect is now available in Chinese and Spanish? This enables some of our non-native English speaking members to forward network news to their staff, students and faculty more easily. While we continue to use English as the business language of the network, we are looking at ways to increase awareness about the opportunities which membership of U21 provides to those whose first language is not English.

If you would like to be put on this mailing list, please email u21@universitas21.com with your name, email address and language preference.

U21: 《连接》现在有西班牙语和汉语版本啦!

你知道U21: 《连接》现在有西语和中文版本吗?这将方便那些母语非英语的成员更加容易地将网络新闻转发给他们的同事和学生。我们仍将英语作为本网络的商业语言,同时,我们正在寻求其他方式来增加母语非英语人士对U21成员校活动和机会的了解。

如果您希望收到我们月刊译本的邮件,请将您的姓名、邮件地址以及语种偏好发送邮件至 u21@universitas21.com

U21:Connect disponible en español y en chino

¿Sabe que U21:Connect está ahora disponible en chino y en español? Esto permite que algunos de nuestros miembros que no son hablantes nativos de inglés remitan las noticias de la red a su personal, estudiantes y facultad más fácilmente. Mientras seguimos usando el inglés como lengua común de la red, estamos buscando formas de dar a conocer las oportunidades que los miembros de U21 proporcionan a aquellos cuya primera lengua no es el inglés.

Si quiere estar incluido en esta lista de contactos, por favor envíe un email a u21@universitas21.com con su nombre, dirección de email y sus preferencias de idioma.

Want to join the U21 Secretariat team?

After 5 years’ excellent work in the U21 Secretariat team, Dr Gemma Marakas, Researcher Engagement Cluster Manager, will be leaving us at the end of May. We are therefore looking for someone to join the team to be responsible for running the RE Cluster, based either in the Birmingham office, or at another location.

More details can be found online, along with information about how to apply for the position.



Educational Innovation

U21 SOC second iteration starts 9 March!

Registration is now open for the second iteration of the U21 Shared Online Course, Critical Thinking in Global Challenges. It offers students the chance to work in an online environment with staff and students from world-class research intensive universities around the globe. This course provides excellent opportunities for cross-institutional and multicultural interaction around thought-provoking challenges such as:

  • Human health and wellbeing
  • Infectious diseases
  • Increasing population
  • Climate change

More details and information on how to sign up can be found at www.universitas21.com/link/SOC

2015 Educational Innovation Conference

This year's U21 Educational Innovation Conference will be hosted by the University of Edinburgh from 28 to 30 October. Registration is now open for up to three members of senior staff from U21 institutions to join us for an exciting programme looking at Using the Digital to Capture the International in learning and teaching. A programme outline and information about registration and hotel accommodations are available online (see below). As last year, there will be a preconference workshop (on 28 October) to discuss pertinent issues in learning and teaching in an informal and interactive environment. Additional details about the workshop will be coming soon.


2015 Deans' of Education Meeting

This year's meeting will take place alongside the AERA Conference held in Chicago, USA. The meeting will be held on Thursday 16 April from 8am to 12 noon. Discussion topics will include measures of research productivity, and ranking processes for universities and schools of education. It is open to all Deans of Education (or similar) from around the network. Further information will be available at www.universitas21.com/link/education shortly.

U21 FINE Events

As in previous years, the Forum for International Networking in Education (FINE) will host several events alongside the AERA Conference in Chicago, USA. These networking events are for graduate research students in Education and for Deans of Education and take place on Friday 17 April and Sunday 19 April, both from 7 to 9 am. Further details about FINE can be found at www.universitas21.com/link/FINE

Researcher Engagement
2015 Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition

Details of the 2015 3MT competition are now online. The U21 competition takes place in October this year, but the competitions at each participating university will be getting underway across our members in the next few months. The winners of each institutional competition will then go forward to the U21 competition, pitting students against their international peers to find the best presentation.

Information on local competitions will be available from the Graduate School in each member university, and further details about the U21 competition, including how to vote for your favourite presentation, will be online later in the year.


Busy month in the RE Cluster

March is a busy month for the RE Cluster, with a number of its key activities taking place. Today (4 March) the Early Career Workshop begins at University College Dublin, focusing this year on Innovation and Entrepreneurship. At the end of the month, the Research Supervisor Support and Development Workshop takes place at Shanghai Jiao Tong University, giving those responsible for supervising PhD study the opportunity to learn and exchange good practices and practical solutions in research supervisor support. Following straight on from this workshop is the annual RE Cluster Meeting, with members of the Research Leaders’ Group and the Deans and Directors of Graduate Studies group meeting to discuss and advance plans for the year ahead.


Student Experience

SE Cluster launches U21 Global Ingenuity Challenge

The SE Cluster has just launched its first Global Ingenuity Challenge competition. The competition challenges interdisciplinary teams of undergraduate students to come up with solutions to a real life problem, the results of which will be judged against teams from across the network to result in one overall winner.

Teams will be made up of up to five students, from a variety of disciplines, who will be given a challenge and two weeks in which to complete it. The team's work will then be presented as a two minute video presentation or pitch, which will then be entered into a network-wide competition to find what the judges deem to be the best, most ingenious solution to the challenge. A prize of US$1,000 per student in the winning team will be awarded, to be spent on participation in another U21 student activity.

More details can be found at www.universitas21.com/link/GIchallenge

People and places

How green is your campus?

If you study or work at the universities of Nottingham or Connecticut, then the answer to that question is “very”. Both universities featured in the top 10 of the recently-released UI GreenMetric World University Ranking, which looks at universities’ efforts towards campus sustainability and environmentally friendly university management. The University of Nottingham took the top spot, with Connecticut ranked 7th. The National University of Singapore and the University of Melbourne were also ranked in the top 50.


UNSW website for visiting colleagues

Colleagues at UNSW Australia have recently launched some new pages on their website to provide information for those wishing to visit the university. It also allows potential visitors to request a visit, by filling out an online form, helping those in the international office to direct the request quickly to the correct people within the university.