University presidents, Microsoft join hands
Doha, November 3, 2011
The International Association of University Presidents (IAUP) has announced a dynamic partnership with Microsoft at the World Innovation Summit for Education (Wise) taking place in Doha.
The initiative will provide universities, especially senior leadership, with guidance and opportunities to collaborate with colleagues around the world on critical issues to help them better run their future organizations and prepare their students for the demands of the 21st century, said a statement.
IAUP is a partner organisation of Wise, which concludes today (November 3).
Wise, IAUP and Microsoft all recognise that fundamental changes are unfolding in higher education around the world. Driven in part by the current world economic situation, globalization of education, the consumerisation of IT, and “digital natives” as the emerging majority of students, universities are experiencing profound challenges related to financing, changes in pedagogy, the preparedness of the professorate, and the pressure to link outcomes to economic drivers.
As in the rest of the modern economy, many universities are turning to technology to help them with their key functions: teaching, research and administration.
IAUP secretary general, Dr Neal King, said: “This partnership between IAUP’s 400 plus presidents and rectors around the world and Microsoft is groundbreaking, and is essential to the future of higher education globally – with its collective ability to anticipate and meet the changing needs of students and the world in which they live.”
In addition, Microsoft is announcing the expansion of Partners in Learning into Higher Education. Previously focused on K-12, Microsoft’s Partners in Learning is a 10-year $500 million commitment to help schools gain better access to technology, foster innovative approaches to pedagogy and actively support teacher professional development.
The goals of the program for Higher Education will be very similar but will focus on Academic Summits, a Teacher Education Initiative and the Higher Education Consortium.
“As Microsoft extends Partners in Learning to Higher Education it is vital that we understand the specific issues, needs and opportunities facing its senior leadership,” said Anthony Salcito, vice president of education at Microsoft. “We value our partnership with the IAUP as their extensive knowledge of, and credibility with this audience uniquely qualifies them to advise Microsoft to successfully be of assistance to higher education in times of prosperity and in times of uncertainty." - TradeArabia News Service