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Mustapha Mohamad should slash drastically participation of Malaysian public universities at the 35th Geneva International Exhibition on Inventions April 18-22 to end the obsession with commercial baubles which completely distracts from search for international academic/research excellence
(Parliament, Friday) : The Higher Education Minister, Datuk Mustapha Mohamad should slash drastically participation of Malaysian public universities at the 35th Geneva International Exhibition on Inventions April 18-22 to end the obsession with commercial baubles which completely distracts from search for international academic and research excellence.
I had in the past criticized public universities, particularly University of Malaya and Universiti Sains Malaysia, for their distorted sense of priorities in surrendering their prestigious slots in international best-university rankings and finding comfort instead in easy-to-get gold, silver and bronze medals in foreign exchibitions like the Geneva International Exhibition on Inventions, Products and Services.
Although the Barisan Nasional MP for Ayer Hitam, Dr. Wee Ka Siong, spoke up in Parliament last week against the millions forked out by public universities for these commercial medals with little academic merit, this issue had been blogged by Tony Pua, Economic Adviser to DAP Secretary-General, on 25th November 2005, where he wrote:
As the world’s best 100 or 200 universities do not have to participate in the Geneva International Exhibition on Inventions, why are Malaysian public universities splashing millions of ringgit every year for these commercial baubles when the money should be better spent in the pursuit of academic and research quality and excellence?
Malaysia is slated this year to submit the second highest number of entries after Russia for the Geneva International Exhibition on Inventions from April 18-22, 2007.
Mustapha should come to Parliament to announce a drastic slashing of such participation and a new policy for public universities to end their obsession with such commercial baubles costing millions of ringgit a year when they do nothing to get the Malaysian public universities restored into the world’s top and best 100 or 200 universities.
In this connection, I have received the following email from a whistleblower from UNIMAS, which I hope Mustapha could also enlighten Parliament on Monday during the winding up on the Higher Education Ministry in the Royal Address debate: