Features

Those planning new universities might think that a good institution will attract top staff wherever it is located. But is the quality of the environment beyond the ivory tower really so insignificant – and has the pandemic changed the calculus? Paul Jump runs through our survey results

1 September

‘Every young student of science has had a fantasy about winning a Nobel prize,’ says one laureate – and ever more rival prizes are being established. But with a cast of thousands currently pursuing the holy grail of a vaccine for Covid-19, might awards committees finally jettison their problematic focus on lone genius, asks Jack Grove

6 August

Has the online transition worked out? How far are student numbers likely to decline? Will governments still have money to invest in universities and research after the pandemic is over? And what does all that mean for staffing? These are just some of the issues explored by our survey of 200 university leaders from 53 territories. Paul Jump runs through the results

25 June

Nations are increasingly making conscious efforts to propel a subset of their universities into the global elite. But are such aspirations ever met? And, if they are, is that a blessing or a curse for those institutions denied entry to the club? Simon Baker examines the issues and the numbers

11 June

As their book about the deep links between education and well-being is published, Anne Case and Nobel laureate Angus Deaton tell John Morgan about their jaw-dropping discoveries of a sharp rise in ‘deaths of despair’ among white American people – and an unhealthy obsession with causality among journals

26 March

Sexism, unthinking managerialism and toxic ‘them and us’ attitudes are still pervasive within UK universities, according to an anonymous academic who found the dissonances between her values, career expectations and lived reality too much to bear

19 March

The UK government is determined to make good on its manifesto pledge to crack down on substandard university programmes. But what is quality? Is it best measured by graduate earnings, learning gain, a national university curriculum – or something else entirely? Anna McKie ponders the options 

19 March

The sudden closure of university campuses across China and elsewhere has necessitated the virtual delivery of vast numbers of courses. And while there have been inevitable teething problems, observers are wondering whether the future might just have become the present. Joyce Lau reports

12 March

The Middle East and North Africa have large youth populations and growing university participation. But with high unemployment, low female workplace participation and universities focused on STEM and the public sector, is all this human capital being wasted? Simon Baker reports 

5 March
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