First Thought

Insights drawn weekly from Karin Fischer’s global-education newsletter, latitude(s). Subscribe here.

When it comes to global research, much of the focus — in both collaboration and competition — is on the relationship between the United States and China. But that bilateral lens misses out on critical linkages around the world, according to a new paper from Georgetown University’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology.

The policy brief looks at the global distribution of research, as measured by outputs such as bibliometric data. Although there has been much concern about the U.S. losing ground to China, the European Union has also become a more prominent player over the past 20 years, with greater research publications in areas like condensed-matter physics and psychiatry.

In addition, CSET finds a shifting picture of global research collaboration. While the U.S., the E.U., and smaller countries with advanced research and development like Australia have all grown significantly more collaborative over the last two decades, China’s level of international collaboration over the same period is relatively flat.

Read more from Karin in this week’s latitude(s).

The Reading List

  • Higher-ed groups are calling on authorities in Belarus to protect academic freedom as a dozen students and professors go on trial for their part in peaceful political protests.
  • President Biden’s nominee to head U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has pledged to deal with backlogs for work authorizations and other immigration paperwork.
  • Some German universities are concerned that North Korea’s Kim Il Sung University is falsely claiming they are “sister” institutions with ongoing academic exchanges.

Featured on

“If you want to dismantle institutionally racist structures, it starts by listening to the people who are most affected, and that really didn’t happen.”

—Thomas Vance, a 2021 University of Michigan graduate and a member of the task force convened to examine the role of policing on the university’s Ann Arbor campus. Was this antiracist task force set up to fail? Sarah Brown has the story in The Chronicle.