Tel Aviv University has called off a lecture by Mohammed Kena’ana, who has served time for helping Hezbollah, Haaretz reported. Ken'ana was invited to speak by left-wing students, but right-wing students and others have been protesting the planned appearance. Originally the university refused to block the appearance, citing the principles of free expression. But the university reversed itself on Sunday and said that it was doing so not because of what the speaker might say, but because of "the threat to public order," and that there had not be enough time to organize security for the event.
In a major development vis-à-vis international scientific collaboration, NASA has suspended the majority of its ties with the Russian federal space agency, Roscosmos, in light of what NASA described as “Russia's ongoing violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity,” CNN reported. Collaboration with Roscosmos will continue, however, in regards to the International Space Station. Since the retirement of NASA’s shuttle program in 2011, the U.S. has had to rely on Russian Soyuz vessels in order to send American astronauts to the station.
Inside Higher Ed reported earlier this week that many academic partnerships between the U.S. and Russia are continuing per usual despite growing tensions between the two governments over Russia’s actions in Ukraine.
A police official was killed and several others were wounded in bombings near Cairo University on Wednesday, The New York Timesreported. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the bombings, which the Times described as seeming to signal an intensification of violence on Egypt’s university campuses.
The president of Al-Quds University, an Arab university in the West Bank, announced his retirement on Wednesday, three days after hundreds of Hamas supporters held a protest on campus, Haaretzreported. In a statement, Sari Nusseibeh, Al-Quds’ president for 20 years and a leading Palestinian political moderate, cited his age and long tenure in office as his reasons for retiring and said he would stay on as a philosophy professor.
The movement on the part of student governments to issue resolutions supporting divestment from companies in connection with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict heated up this week, with results that are sure to be the source of continuing contention.
The University of Michigan’s Central Student Government on Wednesday rejected a resolution calling for the university to divest from companies that allegedly have supported human rights violations against Palestinians, the Ann Arbor Newsreported. The 25-9 vote against the resolution came after a weeklong sit-in by the resolution’s advocates.
Meanwhile, the president of the United Student Government Association at Loyola University, in Chicago, vetoed a similar divestment resolution that the association had passed by a 12-10 margin, with nine abstentions, JNS.org reported. The student government president, Pedro Guerrero, cited what he described as the undemocratic way in which the resolution was introduced and the harm it had caused to the university community, among other concerns, in a veto message.
The Loyola student government, which has already taken two votes on the resolution -- the first passed by an even wider margin of 26-0, with two abstentions -- needs a two-thirds majority to override Guerrero's veto.
Inside Higher Ed is today releasing a free compilation of articles -- in print-on-demand format -- about the globalization of higher education. The articles reflect long-term trends in the recruitment of foreign students, study abroad, internationalization of the curriculum, online education and more. The articles aren't today's breaking news, but reflect long-term trends and some of the forward-looking strategies that colleges are adopting. Download the booklet here.
On Tuesday, April 15 at 2 p.m. Eastern, Inside Higher Ed editors Scott Jaschik and Doug Lederman conducted a free webinar to talk about the issues raised in the booklet's articles. To view the webinar, please click here.