Sunday, September 19, 2021

Buying academic Ferraris for higher education - Geo News

Last updated Monday, August 9, 2021 03:00 ET , Source: TopWireNews

We have a planning problem. We are always in a (fool’s) rush to raise the next project, build the next mega project, but once it is completed, the ribbon is cut, and the applause from the inauguration cutting ceremony dies, so does the interest. Building infrastructure and hiring people is (relatively) easy, but keeping it operational, retaining talent, and tracking outcomes and performance is hard and is a long-term responsibility that is often a thankless job. In the context of the (higher) education sector, the end result is often a gradual decline, brought on by the absence of necessary resources for facilities maintenance. In some cases, in the past, this has resulted in expensive equipment becoming little more than museum pieces – to be shown off to visiting dignitaries, but not put to intended use for fear of it ‘breaking’ or simply because the funds needed for its operation are not available. As a simple example, up until a few years ago a major national university in Islamabad used to turn off its data center around 5pm every day, to conserve electricity – as if it were a washing machine. Among the oft-repeated pitfalls in project proposals, or PC-1 forms, are wildly ambitious, overly optimistic projections in accompanying feasibility studies. Buying land, constructing buildings, even hiring good staff is easy. Ensuring that targets forecast in PC-1 forms are met is a different matter. This is a question that usually has to be revisited years after operations...

Read Full Story: https://www.geo.tv/latest/364293-buying-academic-ferraris-for-higher-education

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