On schedule

Doctoral Studies in the Global South

International Conference - Algiers : 15th & 16th June 2020 - Call for papers

The context: global evolution of doctoral studies

The situation in the South is very different (Cloete et al., 2014). The numbers of doctorates, while stabilizing now in OECD countries (OECD 2016), have been recently increasing very rapidly in developing or emerging countries (Acosta & Celis 2014). The need for qualified teaching staff in fast-growing higher education institutions is pushing up the demand for young doctors (British Council & DAAD 2018). The situation differs widely as between countries and regions of the world. The academic dynamics and the educational and scientific policies are, indeed, varying according to development situations and contexts (Teichler & Vessuri 2008).

There is still little literature on what is actually occurring in these countries Yet the issues are very important. The first has to do with demographics: addressing the rapid increase in the share of the youth categories of the population, with high school diploma and undergraduate degrees, hence the numbers of potential doctoral students, now and in the future (Meyer & Benguerna 2019). The second concerns the issue of sustainable development: reacting to the growing pressure on resources and the environment in complex situations where knowledge is in high demand.

This new context should be taken into account : the worldwide diffusion of doctoral studies and the priority of sustainable development. Training in research and through research takes on a new meaning. Today's challenge is greater than that of a global knowledge based economy. It goes beyond securing economic growth through ensuring competitiveness. It consists of training human resources capable of responding to the challenges of multidimensional societal adaptations that are imposing themselves globally.

Emerging issues, in this new context:

  • The massification of higher education; in addition to measuring this phenomenon, the qualitative impact upon the training of young Phd students, required to provide the teaching staff of the institutions is of concern.

  • The evolution of doctoral training programs in countries of the south,through internal changes within the academia, with new national priorities in research policy and in relation to globalization processes.

  • The quality of the doctoral course and the question of actual skills developed by the doctorate holders ; considering training cycles recently put in place and under pressure of quickly responding to increasing needs, how does one ensure that this highest academic level remains a guarantee of quality?

  • evaluation and monitoring criteria for doctoral programs: What are the requirements to meet exogenously imposed standards while at the same time making adaptations so as to be able to address local needs?

  • The organization of work and the pedagogy of teaching: this is an issue that deserves greater attention. How is scientific rigor to be guaranteed; the access to knowledge and information and the acquisition of transversal skills, such as to allow doctorates to be suitable for employment later?

  • The diversifications of doctorate profiles are reported: business doctorates go hand in hand with traditional, academic ones, with an important contribution of the civil society on the definition of current curricula; these new forms of doctoral training deserve observations, descriptions and comments.

  • The issue of cooperation exchanges between doctoral training programs and enterprises deserves attention. Many dispositions aiming at closing the gap between both spheres have emerged in many countries and raise several questions about : their operational mode, the concrete engagement of the firms involved, the effectiveness of knowledge transfers and access to professional positions.

  • Questions are emerging, in particular, on the recognition of social sciences and humanities and on vocational orientation of the programmes, where different and possibly divergent visions of scientific research may appear.

  • During their training, doctoral students, in particular those in international mobility, show strategic and tactical individual adaptations to complex conditions; their reactions to professional options, public or institutional policies and to programmes of support may be carefully analysed and described.

  • Internationalization and multiparty stakeholders’ cooperation are often taken for granted, as in research in general. However, new forms of educational and academic work, using in particular digital technologies, have emerged attracting special attention and observations from which evidence could be gathered and shared.

  • doctoral studies have become crucial in the assessment of the international division of scientific and technical labor: strategies to attract and capitalize on the global mobility of students and young researchers are currently observed at national states, regional authorities and even at local municipal levels.

Orientation of the conference

The finalization of this meeting program will be undertaken at the reception of the communication proposals. Candidates may thus feel free to propose the topics that is of interest to them, with respect to the central issue of doctoral studies in the global south.

Two dimensions may be taken into account: the first, academic, incorporate the elements of knowledge related to this issue; the second, policy and cooperation oriented, includes programmatic aspects with regards to existing or possible initiatives to help young researchers from the South in their doctoral studies.

These cross-cutting issues invite both researchers and cooperation agents to share their experiences and analysis. By opening the floor to combined perspectives, the link between doctoral studies, scientific research and challenges of sustainable development should be addressed effectively.

Practical information

An abstract of 300 words is required for each proposal. The scientific committee and information team will respond to each proposal submitted.

Abstracts must be sent by email to the following addresses:

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Call for papers sent: 30th September 2019

Abstracts reception: 31st December 2019

Feedback from the Scientific Committee and Organizing team: 31st January 2020

Presentations to be submitted: 15th April 2020

Conference date: 15th & 16th June 2020

Venue of the conference : Algiers (Algeria), Koléa, High National School of Management

The ENSM is on a fairly recent campus in a green setting above the Mitidja, located between the Mediterranean sea and the Atlas mountains range. Participants will be hosted in comfortable hôtels near by.

Some participations will benefit from partial or total support, depending on needs and possibilities.


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