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Higher Education and Economic Development BROAD REFLECTIONS ON MAURITIUS COUNTRY REPORT Dr H Li Kam Wah University of Mauritius Most Interesting and Useful Findings (1) 1. Confirmation of Limited Research Funding Government funding relatively low (p 110, Para 2): Government funding for research remains very low and is becoming more difficult to access. Last Major Funding in 1995 from World Bank Loan Impacts on research as the equipment are outdated and poorly maintained Most Interesting and Useful Findings (2) 2. Private Sector not interested in R&D (p 104, Para 5) Main involvement in Curriculum devpt/review and work placement Investment in R&D is on an ad-hoc basis General Feeling: Government’s Role to invest in R&D Most Interesting and Useful Findings (3) 3. UoM part of Cluster 2 In spite of low research funding High enrolment and graduation rate in SET Substantial growth in postgraduate enrolment High percentage of academics with PhD (45%) Satisfactory student/staff ratio Main Disagreements (1) 1. No Incentives and Rewards p79 Summary Para2:’….there do not appear to be any specific incentives or arrangements to encourage university staff to get involved in engagement or development related work’ Research Publications, main criteria for promotion Staff get a share of 2/3 of income generated through consultancy Consultancy and service to community - criteria for promotion Disagreements (2) 2. Projects not in line with Institutional Strategic Objectives The ICT Business Pre-Incubator Project - Strategic Direction 2:Knowledge Diffusion, Goal No.3: Inculcate Entrepreneurial Flair General Observations (1) 1. New Ministry of Tertiary Education, Science, Research and Technology (since May 2010) Weekly Meetings of Minister with CEOs of Tertiary Institutions Earmarked approx 3.3 million US$ for Research. Modalities not yet defined. Creation of National Research Chairs All funds generated through consultancy will go wholly to the staff concerned and none to the University for one year. General Observations (2) 2. Research output (ISI database) Is it a true reflection of the total no. of publications? Many UoM Staff work published in Conference Proceedings and also in books/chapters in books. . General Observations (3) 3. Selection of flagship projects Better selection of projects could have been carried out, e.g. medicinal plant or compost project could have been included. General Observations (4) 4. Modification to Output data provided No MPhil/PhD graduates for the years 2004/2005 and 2005/2006 should read as 8 (5 PhD + 3 MPhil) and 11 (8 PhD + 3 MPhil) respectively. In the data provided by UoM these figures have been lumped in the ‘Masters’ figure - typing error when inputting data. General Observations (5) 5. Method of computation of the FTE for P/T Academic staff UoM assumed 90 hrs per P/T academic staff in its submission but some of them may have lesser contact hrs. A more appropriate formula would have been: FTE =Total No of contact hours serviced /270 hrs. Acknowledgement We would like to acknowledge the contribution of our former Director, QA, the late Dr B K Baguant who passed away in May 2010, who coordinated the data collection for the UoM.
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