Afrique du Sud
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An expert study has recommended that a large number of South African students be sent abroad to study for doctoral degrees over the next 10 years, as one way to scale up the number of PhDs produced and boost the country’s knowledge and innovation system. The proposal is one of 10 contained in a report launched last week by the Academy of Sciences of South Africa, Assaf.
South Africa’s inability to produce enough doctoral graduates to build the ’knowledge economy’ it aspires to, or simply to replace the existing cohort of academics in the higher education system, is a challenge widely acknowledged by government departments, their agencies and universities. But fixing the problem is a lot harder.
A quarter of all doctoral graduates in South Africa are not from this country, according to the Council on Higher Education, and around one in 10 postgraduate students are foreign. Attracting students from other Southern African countries, especially postgraduates, is an explicit policy aimed at developing research in the region. But efforts to grow the number of research postgraduates are being thwarted by lack of supervision capacity.