King Saudi University in Riyadh Case Study

Evaluate and relate the ethical principles for an educational business organization (university) in relation to the environmental or social issues and sustainable development? Covering COOL: 5 Total Marks: 10 Obtained ——-Marks Achieved/Not Achieved Case 1 ‘Universities’ Unethical Race to the Top” Administrators fail to understand that money can buy you many things, rankings included, but not integrity By Atari A. AY Mean, Special to Gulf News published: O:O January 15, 2012 In the quest for global rankings, proper procedures are often sacrificed in the race to the top.

And that is apparently what has happened with two leading Saudi universities. A report carried out in the December issue of the reputed Science magazine titled Saudi Universities offer cash in exchange for academic prestige suggests that these Saudi universities are buying their way to higher rankings among the world ‘s leading institutions to learning.

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While it is common among reputable universities to compete aggressively to get themselves listed among the top ranked and elite universities, buying their way to the top is not one of the means.

The report charges that a Harvard astrophysicist, Robert Kirsches received an email offer from an astronomer at King Abdullah University (KAKI) in Jessed, Saudi Arabia, for a contract for an associate professorship that would pay Kirsches $72,000 (26th,240) year. Although it was suggested that he could supervise a research group at AKA and spend a week or two a year on Saki’s campus, the requirement was flexible. The roux of the offer was the condition that Kirsches would be required to add King Abdullah University as a second affiliation to his name on the Institute for Scientific Information’s (IS’) list of highly cited researchers.

Robert Kirsches is a Closes Professor of Science at one of the world’s top most prestigious universities, and among his academic achievements have been several scientific discoveries along Ninth the publication of many books and papers on the subject of astronomy.

His credentials are impeccable and so is his academic integrity. So his initial reaction to such a blatant offer was one of disbelief. L thought it was a Joke,” he said.

He soon discovered that another esteemed colleague at another US university had been presented with a similar offer from King Abdullah University, and had accepted lending his name and adding KAKI as a second affiliation on Silhouetted. Com. Article continues below “hen Science magazine dug further, they discovered that more than 60 eminent and top-ranked researchers from different scientific disciplines had recently signed a part-time employment arrangement with another university similar to what was offered to Kirsches ? the lending of their names for a substantial amount.

King Saudi University in Riyadh (SKU), which is larger and more well-known apparently used similar techniques by attaching ASKS name to research publications of noted foreign academicians, regardless of whether the work involved any significant partnership Ninth SKU researchers. The intended goal was to climb up the ranks fast. Back in 2006, a Websites ranking of 3000 international universities placed both universities (AKA and SKU) among the extreme bottom of the list. KAKI ranked 2785, Nile SKU followed at 2910 out of 3000.

The best among all Saudi universities was King Fad University of Petroleum and Minerals (SCUFF) ranked at 1681.

In 2008, in another ranking, none of these universities was in the top 500 list published by the Shanghai-based Academic Ranking of World Universities in 2008. With the billions being spent by the government, this brought severe criticism in the media against the university administrators. It prompted the administrators to come up with novel ideas to boost their rankings and do it quickly. Two programmer were initiated at SKU to turn things around.

One was the Distinguished Scientist Fellowship Programmer (ADDS), whose objective according to their website was to ‘increase the umber of highly cited researchers affiliated with SKU’ and to ‘initiate Joint research activities between international researchers who have the potential to publish in Nature and Science Journals,’ and the other was a visiting professorship programmer, “hose requirements specified that the visiting professor should publish five articles per year in SIS-indexed Journals and he would be paid an amount for every paper co- authored with ASKS staff in an SIS-listed publication.

Very soon, following this pay-as- Ho -go strategy, U and signed on several top-ranked scientists trot Europe, ND the US, who produced 1211 SKU-affiliated publications in 2010, nearly three times the figure for 2008. Little of the work these articles describe was done at SKU, as claimed by a professor at SKU. And the strategy worked wonders.

In 2010, SKU broke into the 300 to 400 bracket of universities in the Shanghai rankings; and in the September 2011 rankings they zoomed even higher up by being placed in the 200 to 300 bracket. Whiffletree’s latest ranking place SKU at 18th place, a Jump of over 2700 spots since 2006. Incredible! Rue academicians are concerned at these practices.

In an article that appeared in n Arabic daily, a professor of agricultural economics at SKU in criticizing the practice flatly stated, ‘They are simply buying names. And the director of the Centre for Academic Integrity at Clemson University in South Carolina said such paid for hire programs knowingly create ‘a false impression that these universities are producing great research. ‘ What a shame. In the quest for honors, ethics have taken a back seat. Apparently the university administrators fail to understand that money may buy {oh many things, rankings included, but integrity would not be one of them.

The race to the top should not be littered with unethical means.