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Little chance of Lanka becoming knowledge hub: FUTA

11 November 2011 03:30 pm - 6     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Local universities are facing a brain drain and will not be able to achieve the government’s goal of turning Sri Lanka into a South Asian knowledge hub as the academic staff has not received their wage increments promised by the government, the Federation of University Teachers Association (FUTA) said today.

FUTA spokesman Mahin Mendis said only 25 per cent of the academic staff in local universities were doctoral degree holders and that if the universities were to retain the PhD holders the government should ensure that they received the increments owed to them.

“You can’t call a university a university if it is not run by PhD holders. If we are to have the highest qualified academics in our local universities they should be paid accordingly,” Dr. Mendis said.

The 2008 Prof. Malik Ranasinghe-Jeffrey Committee set up to inquire into salary anomalies of university academic staff had recommended that salaries of senior professors be increased to Rs.168,750.

Dr. Mendis said this recommendation has not been implemented and that instead the academics have only received a 25 per cent conditional allowance for research and development and an increase in academic allowances.

“We have only received an interim solution which is no solution at all. It is not acceptable, but should be urgently fulfilled if not there will be a crisis in 2012” he said.

Dr. Mendis said only one per cent of the country’s national income was allocated for higher education in Sri Lanka but it should be increased to six per cent.

He said Sri Lanka was one of the South Asian countries that invested the least in higher education. “Even if investments in higher education are increased to six per cent we will still be the lowest investor in education as other countries in the region allocate much more,” Dr. Mendis said. (Olindhi Jayasundere)
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  Comments - 6

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  • tharuka Saturday, 12 November 2011 05:21 AM

    To become Sri Lanka into a South Asian knowledge hub, unversity academic staff have to do research. Social Science and Business research do not required hiegher capital. Futher, some research related to medicine such as community medicine also does not need big money. However, university staff don't do any research. Therefore, there is no research publication in reputed journal indexes such as SSCI and SCI. University lecturers engage in tution classes, lecturing private institution and personal business. There should be a rule at least onepublication in SSCI or SCI indexes journal per year. Why there is law number of PhD holders in Sri Lankan Universities? If I frankly speak, universities recruit less qualified person with personal contacts with authoroties.

    Victoria39 Saturday, 12 November 2011 05:57 AM

    Sri Lanka at that time when she was called Ceylon, was NOT a hub of South Asian Knowledge, but WAS the hub of the whole world and the names listed in the wikipedia is the proof? Instead of spending people's money trying to host the games at Hambantota which will only boost the present rulers to face future elections, use the money to increase the standard of education, health by giving more salaries and improve the standard to make the nation Healthy and Educated

    Shane Saturday, 12 November 2011 06:24 AM

    Well said!!We expected to bear 60% of the expenditure of CWG 2018, yet cannot do anything else in the fields of Research..The universities could be improved & given more facilities..with the current situation, how can we even expect our graduates to remain in the country!

    Ranjith Friday, 11 November 2011 08:59 PM

    Leave my friend, like I did. You will get nowhere.

    ampare son Friday, 11 November 2011 09:01 PM

    sound like reasonable to pay hike.

    Sena Saturday, 12 November 2011 04:24 AM

    When gov grants all due rights to our academics, Sri Lanka will be a desert of Ph.D's. Until they are paid decently, few simple thing can keep them from draining out, such as offering good schools for their children, offering 0% tax for buying a car every three year, subsidizing telephone bills and house rent, paying international memberships etc. If gov does these thing for thousands of corrupt politicians for doing nothing, why can't it do this for Ph.D.s for maintaining our educational standards. It's so painful to see our education is going down the drain under the current administration.


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