January news headlines

09 January 2013
Welcome to the January ebulletin with the latest news and items of interest to staff and students across the Universitas 21 network.<br />

2013 U21 Award winners announced

We are delighted to announce the two recipients of this year’s U21 Award, an award given to individuals from the U21 network who have led particularly innovative or extraordinary projects which further internationalisation, or who have shown a sustained and prolonged contribution building relations between U21 members to support internationalisation.

The 2013 Awards go to Jenny McGregor from the University of Melbourne for her outstanding contribution to the promotion of Australia’s relationship with Asia through the Asialink programme and Professor Xu Qian of Fudan University for her extensive and continued work in global health education, both at Fudan and in the wider community and in particular as part of the U21 UNMDG project.

The two awards will be presented at a ceremony at the 2013 Presidential Meeting and AGM at the University of British Columbia in May and we offer both winners our warmest congratulations.

Full press releases will be available on the U21 website in the coming days.



Research Integrity workshop leads to new collaboration

From 10 to 11 December 2012 senior staff working on research integrity matters met at the University of Hong Kong for the first U21Dealing with Research Misconductworkshop.  21 delegates representing thirteen U21 member universities attended the two-day event which welcomed a range of guest speakers including Dr Ping Sun, Office of Research Integrity, Ministry of Science and Technology of China, and Professor Nicholas Steneck, Director, Research Ethics and Integrity Program from the University of Michigan.  

The workshop covered a variety of topics, ranging from methods to train both students and staff in ethics, to dealing with multi-institution, multi-national research misconduct cases.  By the end of the second day it was clear that much could be learnt and shared across the network, and there was great scope for benchmarking and shared principles that would ensure research of the highest integrity.  To that end, the group has decided to formalise a U21 collaboration and Dr Paul Taylor, Director, Office for Research Ethics and Integrity, University of Melbourne,  is currently working on Terms of Reference (TOR) with the group.

We would like to take this opportunity to welcome other interested colleagues to join the group and share expertise in this area.  The TOR and clear goals will soon be available, but if you wish to be involved in this group’s activities please contact Gemma Marakas, (g.marakas@bham.ac.uk) in the U21 Secretariat.



Early Career Researchers in Ecological Urban Design meet in Shanghai

Shanghai Jiao Tong University hosted the 3rd Early Career Researcher workshop on the themeEcological Urban Designat the start of December. Fifteen member universities were represented by 40 delegates, who spent two days networking, sharing current research and undertaking a group project which encouraged a deeper understanding of international team work, communication and interdisciplinary collaboration.

The ECR Workshops are an initiative of the Research Leaders group and the group will now review evaluations from the past three workshops, to ensure that future workshops reflect the needs of ECRs around the network and provide an exceptional international developmental experience.

The next ECR workshop is due to take place at Tecnológico de Monterrey in 2013.  For more information please contact Gemma Marakas (g.marakas@bham.ac.uk) or keep an eye on the U21 website.




Open House forums on best practice in internationalisation in Auckland and Glasgow

Following a benchmarking exercise based on the International Student Barometer survey in which many U21 universities participate, two Open House forums are to take place, giving colleagues around the network the chance to learn from those who are considered by international students to be the ‘best’ in particular areas relating to the international student experience.  These first two events, in what is anticipated to be a larger series of events, will be focusing on the ‘learning, living and support’ experiences of international students. 

In order to make these as geographically accessible as possible to colleagues the network, there are two events taking place – one at the University of Auckland (25-26 March) and one at the University of Glasgow (17-18 April).  Further details will be available on the events page of the U21 website very soon and colleagues interested in learning more should contact David Baker (d.baker@auckland.ac.nz) at the University of Auckland.



Deans of Education meeting announced

The U21 Deans of Education group will be holding its annual meeting on Saturday 27 April in San Francisco, directly prior to the start of the AERA Conference there. 

The feature item of the U21 Deans meeting will be a symposium titled,Investigating Innovative Pre-Service Teacher Education in Australia, Scotland and the USA: Metaphors and Modelswhich is intended to raise fundamental questions about the nature of teacher education and the premises on which teacher education programmes are founded by juxtaposing reports from research studies into teacher pre-service education conducted in Australia, Scotland and the USA. The agenda will also include the usual Deans' Roundtable to provide an opportunity to share recent developments.

Further details of the full agenda for the U21 Deans of Education programme will be provided in February.

All Deans of Education (or equivalent) at U21 member university would be very welcome to attend and should contact David Clarke (d.clarke@unimelb.edu.au) to register an interest or ask for further information.




Nottingham Ningbo launches summer courses

The University of Nottingham Ningbo campus has just announced its summer programme and is offering a discount of 2000 CNY to students at U21 universities who are interested in participating. 

These two-week courses, based at Nottingham’s campus in China, will provide students with the opportunity to study a new subject while meeting people from all over the world and learning about a different culture. Students will study with world-class academics, take part in exciting cultural and social activities and make friends and memories that will stay with them for life. 

The courses are offered in China from Sunday 23 June to Saturday 6 July 2013 and have the titles

  • China - the rising super power
  • Innovative Design and Culture

Further details about the courses and the application procedure can be found at www.nottingham.edu.cn/international-summer-schoolor contact  international-summer-school@nottingham.edu.cn for more information.   



Birmingham sharing information through CoPILOT project

Colleagues at the University of Birmingham are working with the London School of Economics and UNESCO to explore how librarians and educational developers can share information and digital literacy resources globally to support their own teaching and build good practice. Project CoPILOT (Community of Practice for Information Literacy Online Teaching) is currently looking to recruit practitioners teaching information or digital literacy and with an interest in creating and using open educational resources.

If you would like to get involved please contact Nancy Graham (n.graham.1@bham.ac.uk) who will register you to assess the IL OER community via the WSIS website http://www.wsis-community.org/ . Further details about the project are available at http://delilaopen.wordpress.com/project-co-pilot/



U21’s Australian members rank highly in Excellent in Research for Australia evaluation

In 2012, the Australian Research Council conducted the second Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) evaluation across all eight discipline clusters, the results of which were published at the end of last year.  All three of our Australian members fared excellently, with the universities of Queensland, Melbourne and New South Wales ranking among the top four universities with the most of fields of research rated ‘Above’ or ‘Well Above’ World Standard.

This, of course, comes as no real surprise, as our members prove time and time again that one of the network’s strengths is its members’ consistent and wide-ranging success in research and the enthusiasm with which researchers across the network collaborate across international boundaries.



McGill and Tecnológico de Monterrey sign new research agreement

While we are aware of many graduate research programmes, we were pleased to hear that two U21 members have recently signed a co-operation agreement designed to offer undergraduate students from Tecnológico de Monterrey the opportunity to take part in the Undergraduate Research Trainee Programme at McGill University.  The programme lasts for 12 to 16 weeks and is held during McGill University’s summer semester. Students chosen by the campus will be supervised by lecturers from a number of different faculties at McGill, depending on the project the student proposes.


We would be glad to hear of other similar ventures giving undergraduate students the chance to take part in research programmes, supporting the work that our Student Experience cluster promotes through the URC.


New Years Honours around the network

In the UK the New Year’s Honours list highlighted a number of U21 academics and faculty who have been recognised for their outstanding contributions in their field.  Topping the list this year was Professor Peter Higgs of the University of Edinburgh who was made a Member of the Order of the Companions of Honour for his work in relation to the Higgs boson which achieved a major breakthrough in July 2012.  Also among those on the list were Dr June McCombie OBE (Nottingham),  Professor John Butt OBE (Glasgow), Professor David Porteous OBE (Glasgow),  Professor Oscar Buneman MBE (Edinburgh) and Mr Alan Walker MBE (Edinburgh). 

In addition, three current faculty members at the University of British Columbia were named to the the Order of Canada, one of Canada’s highest civilian honours, so many congratulations to Professor Julie Cruikshank, Professor Clyde Hertzman and Dr David Scheifele.




UBC reflects on a superb year for sustainability

As we continue to look at the achievements of our members in the area of sustainability, we are pleased to see how successful a year the University of British Columbia had in 2012 and how its plans are developing for another fruitful year.  The university was awarded 13 provincial, national or international accolades for energy management, green building innovations and design, and operational and academic initiatives.

We would be delighted to feature other universities’ sustainability achievements and will be featuring more case studies in future edition ofThe Newsletterand on our website in the coming months.



New PVC Internationalisation at Nottingham

A number of senior management changes at the University of Nottingham came into effect at the start of January.  Of particular interest may be the newly-appointed PVC International, Professor Hai-Sui Yu, who takes over from Professor Chris Ennew as she moves to take on her new role as Provost of the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus.

We look forward to working with Professor Yu, as well as continuing our involvement with all of Nottingham’s campuses and their management teams around the world.