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Engaging in the challenges facing Middle East and African higher education at 2nd QS-MAPLE

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A total of 147 participants from 74 institutions in 33 countries attended 2nd QS-MAPLE in Durban, the first time it was held in Africa. The event was organised by QS Asia and co-hosted by University of KwaZulu-Natal. It was held in the beautiful hotel of Southern Sun Elangeni.

42 presenters discussed issues facing Africa and the Middle East higher  education system and the challenges of achieving global recognition. Some of the key presenters include the Former Minister of Science and Technology of South Africa, Dr Mosibudi Mangena and Secretary-General of Association of African Universities, Professor Olugbemiro Jegede.

Mr Richard Yelland, Head of Education Management and Infrastructure Division, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), delivered the opening speech highlighting the issue of the growing number of students globally and the need for higher-level skills in the knowledge economy.

Dr Mosibudi spoke about the importance of having more Vice Chancellors of various African universities attending the event in order to compare with other countries on the level of progress.

Professor Jegede talked about the current standing of African universities in the world university rankings.

37% of attendees were from South Africa and we had 42 presenters taking part in respective parallel sessions and country reports. Generally the participants were happy with the event and cited networking as the main reason for attending.

Overall, QS-MAPLE was a success as seen by the comments from the attendees. Delegates commented on the high quality of the papers presented and praised the event for being smooth and well organised.

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