China’s science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) research environment

China’s science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) research environment: A snapshot, by Xueying Han, and Richard P. Appelbaum, PLOS One (2018).

Abstract (emphasis mine):

In keeping with China’s President Xi Jinping’s “Chinese Dream,” China has set a goal of becoming a world-class innovator by 2050. China’s higher education Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) research environment will play a pivotal role in influencing whether China is successful in transitioning from a manufacturing-based economy to an innovation-driven, knowledge-based economy. Past studies on China’s research environment have been primarily qualitative in nature or based on anecdotal evidence. In this study, we surveyed STEM faculty from China’s top 25 universities to get a clearer understanding of how faculty members view China’s overall research environment. We received 731 completed survey responses, 17% of which were from individuals who received terminal degrees from abroad and 83% of which were from individuals who received terminal degrees from domestic institutions of higher education. We present results on why returnees decided to study abroad, returnees’ decisions to return to China, and differences in perceptions between returnees and domestic degree holders on the advantages of having a foreign degree. The top five challenges to China’s research environment identified by survey respondents were: a promotion of short-term thinking and instant success (37% of all respondents); research funding (33%); too much bureaucratic or governmental intervention (31%); the evaluation system (27%); and a reliance on human relations (26%). Results indicated that while China has clearly made strides in its higher education system, there are numerous challenges that must be overcome before China can hope to effectively produce the kinds of innovative thinkers that are required if it is to achieve its ambitious goals. We also raise questions about the current direction of education and inquiry in China, particularly indications that government policy is turning inward, away from openness that is central to innovative thinking.

Universities’ Global Ranking Criteria Modification According to the Analysis of Their Websites

Universities’ Global Ranking Criteria Modification According to the Analysis of Their Websites, by Mohammed Al-Hagery, IJCSNS (2017) Vol. 17 No. 12 pp. 67-78

A Modified Indicators and Weights for ARWU


Global universities are subject to the academic ranking every year. One of the common ranking types that are applied annually is called the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU). It developed by a team of researchers and experts. The ARWU is composed of a set of common criteria related to academic tasks and it does not include any indication or factor relevant to the recent technology, such as the websites of universities. Actually, there is a lack to find out the relationship between universities’ global ranking and their website features. Therefore, this research aimed at updating the current ranking model by adding a new criterion reflexing the websites’ features related to its contents and structure. This research focuses on universities as two classes ranked and unranked. This process includes extract, analyze websites’ datasets, visualize the initial results, study the relationship and the significant differences between the two classes if found, and modify the ARWU by updating the criteria list & their weights. A special S/W tool applied to analyze websites and to extract the required data. This research contributes to modify and enhance the ARWU model to be more comprehensive than the current one. The involvement of universities’ websites in the ranking process will encourage universities to improve their websites to achieve a higher-ranking level amongst leading universities. Furthermore, it gives a good chance for all universities to participate in the global ranking competition, especially the universities that have excellent outcomes and perfect websites.

Design of the ARWU Modified Model Components