Category Archives: Global

What’s happening abroad—and how it affects U.S. colleges.


Nobel Laureate to Leave Helm of India’s Nalanda University

Amartya Sen, the Harvard economist and Nobel laureate who was involved in the creation of India’s Nalanda University and was appointed its first chancellor last year, says he will not stay on for a second term because the government wants him to leave, according to reports in The New York Times and newspapers in India.

Mr. Sen has been a vocal critic of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, whom he has accused of not doing enough to ensure the safety of women and members of minority groups in India. He …


U. of California Students Call for Divestment Over Palestinian Rights

The body representing the University of California system’s students is calling on the university to divest its holdings in “companies engaged in the systematic violation of Palestinian rights” through the Israeli occupation of the West Bank. The UC Student Association voted on the issue on Sunday, according to a news release from Students for Justice in Palestine.

The action followed a similar vote held in December by a union representing student workers across the system.


Dispute Among Scholars Dooms Gift to Russian-Studies Group

A controversy among scholars of Russian studies has resulted in the death of a proposed gift to a major association that would have provided much-needed financial support for the discipline, The New York Times reports.

The dispute concerns the Russia scholar Stephen F. Cohen, who is an emeritus professor at New York and Princeton Universities. Mr. Cohen’s views about American foreign policy in Ukraine are controversial, and he has been described as an apologist for Vladimir V. Putin, Russia’…


Saudi King Whose Scholarships Sent Thousands of Students to the West Dies

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, the oil-rich nation that is a close ally of the United States, died on Friday, according to a statement on state television that was cited by The New York Times and other news outlets. He was 90.

The obituary in the Times highlighted a key aspect of King Abdullah’s influence on global higher education—a scholarship program that was a boon to American colleges’ foreign-student enrollments:

Abdullah’s greatest legacy, however, may prove to be a scholarship program …


Egypt Can Dismiss Professors for Political Activities Under New Decree

University professors in Egypt can be dismissed for participating in on-campus political-party activities under a decree issued last week by the country’s president, Daily News Egypt reports. The decree, which amends a law that regulates university affairs, also allows professors to be dismissed for participating in violence or riots on campuses, or for bringing to a university facility any weapons, explosives, or other materials that can cause harm.

Hany El-Hosseiny, a professor at Cairo Univer…


Dalhousie U. Suspends 13 Dentistry Students Over Facebook Comments

Canada’s Dalhousie University announced on Monday that it had suspended 13 male dentistry students from clinical activities pending an investigation of misogynistic comments posted on Facebook, but the announcement did little to quell mounting controversy around the institution, The Globe and Mail reported.

An academic committee is considering further penalties, such as academic suspension or expulsion, and hundreds of protesters gathered outside an administration building on Dalhousie’s main ca…


Global-Education Groups Hail Restoration of Relations With Cuba

Two global-education associations are applauding President Obama’s announcement on Wednesday that the United States will restore relations with Cuba, ending a diplomatic freeze that lasted more than half a century.

“Generations of foreign-policy makers have agreed that academic exchanges are one of the most powerful tools we have to open up closed societies,” Victor C. Johnson, senior adviser for public policy at Nafsa: Association of International Educators, said in a written statement. “The pr…


Romanian Prime Minister Gives Up Ph.D., 2 Years After Plagiarism Finding

The prime minister of Romania has given up his doctoral degree two years after a panel of academics found he had plagiarized large sections of his dissertation, Reuters reports. Victor Ponta continues to dispute the findings of plagiarism, which he deemed “a political decision” in 2012.

Mr. Ponta made the announcement in a message posted on his Facebook page on Tuesday and addressed to the rector of the University of Bucharest. “I have written to you to notify that I give up the doctor of law ti…


Egypt Blocks Entry by Scholar Critical of Government

An American scholar who has criticized Egypt’s government was blocked from entering the country late Friday night, The New York Times reports.

Michele Dunne, a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, had flown to Cairo for a conference organized by the Egyptian Council for Foreign Affairs. Ms. Dunne said in a telephone interview with the Times that she had been held for about six hours at the Cairo airport, then put on a flight out of the country. It appeared to be t…


U. of California Student Workers’ Union Calls for Divestment From Israel

A union that represents more than 13,000 teaching assistants and other student workers on nine campuses of the University of California system is calling on the university to divest from companies and institutions that “profit from Israeli apartheid and occupation of Palestinians.”

According to a news release from the union, United Auto Workers Local 2865, more than 65 percent of the 2,100 members who participated in a vote approved the divestment resolution.

More than half of the voters also en…