Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Threads - food prices, higher education

Just a few notes this morning on stories of interest in the Australian media relevant to some of the things I write about.

In an opinion piece in the Australian, Paul Kelly talks about the social and impact of high global food prices in the context of IMF warnings that food prices are likely to stay high for years. I haven't checked the IMF assessment.

The Sydney Morning Herald carried Malcolm Brown's obituary of Bob Dengate, one of the Australian pioneers of on-line education. My current work has drawn me back into the periphery of this area. There are some interesting issues here that are worth consolidating.

Staying with education, the Australian's Jill Rowbotham reports on the strategic manoeuvring and game-playing as universities head towards a series of deadlines for the second round of the Excellence in Research for Australia evaluation exercise. This is another of those measurement and pecking order things that I write about so much.

I have been trying to think of new ways of explaining my concerns.

Turning now to international students, Michael Sainsbury writes about the way the Federal Government is ramping up its efforts to reverse the damaging trend of falling student enrolments from its largest market by launching a fresh education marketing campaign in China, while Bernard Lane reports on the continued efforts of student recruiter IDP to diversify away from the Australian marketplace. IDP is 50% owned by Australian universities.

Finishing with international students, Andrew Trounson reports on research by the Gigi Foster from the University of NSW on language skills and performance. Her research seems to confirm anecdotal evidence, including that from her own institution.


Anonymous said...

Jim - about nothing at all really.

I've just turned off (physically and mentally) the Sky News People's Forum. Our Premier is very photogenic, and talks well, but I just think it's somehow demeaning to have the Premier of NSW subjected to this sort of process. I know - I'm old fashioned.

I suppose Mr O'F will now get his 30 minutes on the slow griller, but I just can't bring myself to watch him yet again use that dreadful phrase "the people have had a gutful"


Jim Belshaw said...

I have turned off, too, David. The difficulty in this campaign is that it's not a campaign at all!