The Tempinis diaries

January 31, 2009

USM as a Quota Free University

Filed under: education, malaysia, politics — toru @ 6:23 am

Dare we even hope that USM would be designated as the first quota free university in Malaysia in terms of recruitment of faculty and student admissions? This would effectively cement its status as the apex university of Malaysia.

Even in India, they are reversing quotas at some of the top universities.

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January 29, 2009
India Reverses Faculty Hiring Quotas at 47 Top Universities
New Delhi — Buckling under pressure from academics at the prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology, the Indian government has decided to exempt those and a number of other universities from quotas in faculty appointments. News of the exemption was revealed at a meeting on Wednesday of the institutes’ council, the highest decision-making body for the engineering schools.
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December 29, 2008

Another Hare Brained Scheme by Khaled Nordin

Filed under: education, malaysia, politics — toru @ 1:44 pm

Here is another hare brained scheme by the Higher Education Minister, Khaled Nordin. It seems that in Malaysia, we are always scraping the bottom of the barrel. Why do I think this is a bad idea? Academics who are retrenched are probably those who do not write. So tell me again why does Khaled Nordin want to hire them?

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Local Varsities To Recruit Foreign Academicians

JOHOR BAHARU, Dec 20 (Bernama) — The Higher Education Ministry will identify academicians who are being retrenched abroad as a result of the global economic downturn for absorption into local institutions of higher learning.

Its minister, Datuk Mohamed Khaled Nordin said the recruitment of teaching manpower from abroad could raise the level of higher education in the country.

�Educational experts who may be retrenched abroad can be engaged by the local tertiary institutions which will at the same time raise the standard of higher education in the country,” he told reporters after the handing over of the instruments of appointment of Members of the Advisory Committee of the Pasir Gudang Community College, here Saturday.

Mohamed Khaled said the ministry was also considering the re-employment of lecturers and tutors who had retired.

He said the scope of studies at the community colleges would also be scrutinised to give the students a better edge in their job applications.

He said to date, more than 75,000 students had pursued diploma and certificate courses at the 37 community colleges and 19 branches of the community colleges throughout the country since their inception in 2001.

The minister said nine more community colleges and 15 branches would be set up nationwide under the 9th Malaysia Plan.

— BERNAMA

July 15, 2008

Melbourne University reappoints Glyn Davis as VC

Filed under: education, malaysia, politics — Tags: , — toru @ 12:47 pm

It seems that the Higher Education Minister has not decided on whether to extend Rafiah Salim’s contract as the Vice Chancellor of University of Malaya.  More worrying is the fact that the Ministry does not seem to know how to conduct a proper Vice-Chancellor search committee. I have consistently maintained that in order for there to be some continuity, Rafiah Salim should be extended for at least one more term.    See the story below where the Vice Chancellor of Melbourne University has been appointed for 10 years.  A revolving door involving a string of Vice Chancellors is not healthy for an institution of higher learning.

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Melbourne University reappoints Glyn Davis as VC

Andrew Trounson

IN what is a restatement of its confidence in the new “Melbourne model” of offering professional graduate degrees, the University of Melbourne has reappointed its vice-chancellor Glyn Davis to another five-year term.

The appointment, which could keep Professor Davis at Melbourne until the start of 2015, will also scrap any lingering rumours that he could be tempted to Canberra by close friend and fellow Queenslander, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd.

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July 13, 2008

Tapping into Malaysian Diaspora: Datukship for Danny Quah?

Filed under: education, malaysia, politics — toru @ 5:35 am

With all eyes on the political drama playing out between Anwar and Najib, I guess the government is not doing much nowadays, at least in the Higher Education sector.

I have previously written about the brain drain issue from Malaysia here, here and here. Now that the brain drain has happened, we should do something positive about this situation i.e. tapping into these Malaysians’ talent. Unfortunately, Malaysia is doing a terrible job at tapping into the talent and energy of its diaspora. Take Malaysian born Danny Quah of LSE for example. He is a world-renowned economist who is now Head of Department at the LSE Economics Department. Why has the Malaysian government not tapped into his expertise in a formal manner? From the Bernama article below, he seems to have been consulted by the World Bank and governments such as the United Kingdom and Singapore but not Malaysia. Also, why is it that the local Malaysian varsities have not approached him for a joint professorial appointment? If a joint professorial appointment is possible for a Mat Salleh like Jeffrey Sachs, why not Danny Quah? And why has he not been bestowed a Datukship? If we can give Datukships to entertainers like Siti Nurhaliza & Michaell Yeoh, fashion icon like Jimmy Choo and sports personalities like Nichol David, why not confer the title on an academic who has distinguished himself globally?

These are some small but concrete steps in luring back talented Malaysian diaspora to collaborate with our universities and government agencies for the betterment of the country.
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May 26, 2008 20:24 PM
Dismantle Fuel Subsidy System, Says Economic Professor

KUALA LUMPUR, May 26 (Bernama) — The subsidy system, especially for fuel, should be dismantled as Malaysia is capable of absorbing the consequences, according to a professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

“It could well be tolerated by reducing it by 20 percent or if not higher in very short term or in six months,” said Prof Danny Quah at a public lecture on “The Rise and Fall of Subsidies” organised by the LSE Alumni Society of Malaysia here Monday.

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