Academic papers. Photo: iStock

Most of the PhD candidates I have had a chance to meet in Pakistan so far are pursuing a doctorate because they have not found a job after obtaining their last academic degree. Maybe this a desirable option for them, but it should not be a motivation for pursuing a PhD.

Let us consider Pakistani academics. Most think the research and development culture was promoted through significant grants for research laboratories under the leadership of Dr Atta-ur-Rahman, a well-known scientist who was chairman of the Higher Education Commission (HEC) in 2002. Several initiatives were launched, such as the introduction of a PhD allowance, a productivity allowance, and salaried faculty positions, and were linked to publications, travel grants, and incentives for Pakistani PhDs to pursue postdoctoral programs abroad.

What do international organizations say about that era? Thomson Reuters, a multinational media firm, reported that in the last 10 years Pakistan has emerged as the country with the highest percentage of highly cited papers when compared with Brazil, Russia, India and China. Moreover, scientific productivity has increased by a factor of four times, from 2,000 papers in 2006 to more than 9,000 papers in 2015, and 12,000 papers right now, and the trend is continuing.

It sounds great. But is it? What Thomson Reuters has failed to understand is that the HEC has a voracious appetite for the publication of academic papers, and has framed its policies in accordance with that appetite. The HEC enjoys perks, promotions, foreign trips, and pay that are closely linked to the number of papers published. Interestingly, universities are becoming paper factories, with absurd outputs. After teachers join an institution as instructors, they are promoted to professorships on the basis of their paper output. By the same criterion, they are granted civil awards. Consequently, such culture in academia has been insidiously affecting the teaching environment in classrooms and the quality of education in hard sciences.

American experts and educators continually assess their students’ progress – Pakistan needs to learn to do the same

The United States, in contrast, enjoys a reputation as the home of one of the best education systems generally and higher education specifically. Why? American experts and educators continually assess their students’ progress – Pakistan needs to learn to do the same.

In a written to response to my article, a reputed indigenous professor at Quaid-i-Azam University in Islamabad, Dr Farhan Saif, remarked: “The gradual decline of higher education over the last 15 years has seen today a scientific culture based on greed, nepotism and superficial activism. The intolerable academic corruption in scientifically established countries is being given shelter under different names. The present-day scientific methodology introduced by Arab scientists a thousand years ago that requires theories based on solid experiments is rarely seen at work among Pakistani researchers.”

He continued: “The so evolved clumsy environment has a devastating effect on the PhD program being run in the country. The basic requirement of the local research program is to solve the problems and challenges faced by a country by its own people locally. In contrast, our local faculty in higher education institutions and universities are least concerned with the purpose, instead of becoming a beacon of knowledge maximum are busy in self-projection and in making money by writing low-quality but high-in-number papers.”

Dr Pervez Hoodbhoy, a reputed Pakistani scientist, lambasted the substandard doctorate program being run in the country, in his Dawn article, Enough PhD’s, thank you, argued that “Pakistan now has legions of highly paid ignoramus cartoon professors.” According to Hoodbhoy, the university system cannot be improved by publishing vacuous research papers – what really matters are having strict ethical standards, cultivating excellence, rejecting mediocrity, and nurturing a spirit of inquiry and intellectual excitement.

Bottom line

Currently, dishonest academics are turning the research and development culture into a mere rat race. And the onus must fall on the HEC to address this academic rot. The HEC must revise its policies and role. The development of a culture of research and critical thinking must be encouraged. And the focus must now be on producing and sanctioning research based on real-world problems, rather than one that is only focusing on adding to the existing tally of worthless studies by incompetent academics. Professors must produce books, not low-quality, copy-paste papers. Professors must understand the art of inducing critical thinking in students and unlocking creativity. Professors must be true masters at teaching their subjects.

Irfan Khan

Irfan Khan has written for various media outlets including CGTN, Daily Times, The Nation, Modern Diplomacy, Geopoliitca.ru, Eurasia Review, and Times of Israel. He mainly focuses on the Middle East, South Asia, the new emerging world order and human rights.

Join the Conversation

1193 Comments

  1. Heⅼlo there, I discovered your blog by way of Google whilst looking for a similar matter,
    your website came up, it seems to be great. I’ve bookmarked it in my
    google bookmаrks.
    Hello there, simply was аware off youг blog through Google, and found that it’s
    really informative. I’m going to be careful for brussels.

    I’lⅼ be grateful when you proceed this in fᥙture.

    Ꮇany peolle will рrobably be benefited from your writing.
    Cһeers!

  2. You could definitely see your expertise in the paintings you write. The sector hopes for more passionate writers like you who are not afraid to say how they believe. All the time go after your heart. “If you feel yourself falling, let go and glide.” by Steffen Francisco.

  3. Many thanks for being my own coach on this matter.
    My spouse and i enjoyed your article very much and most of all favored how you really handled the areas I widely known as controversial.
    You are always extremely kind to readers really like me and aid me in my life.
    Thank you.

  4. It’s a pity you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this excellent blog!
    I suppose for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS feed to
    my Google account. I look forward to fresh updates and will share this site with my
    Facebook group. Talk soon!

  5. sexo anal gay chocho porno gay sexo gratis home porno busco chica para
    hacer trio chat sexo madrid sexo anal en castellano sexo calatayud chat de sexo barcelona casting porno espanol videos sexo duro gay conocer gente por
    wasap porno gratis madres redes sociales para sexo donde puedo
    conocer gente nueva xxx porno casero videos porno chatroulette videos porno de lesbianas
    sexo tias videos porno gratis duro porno sex gay quiero ver sexo videos porno para movil gratis chica busca trio
    videos porno de famosas porno muy maduras chat con cam sexo masajes pornos porno para descargar sexo guipuzcoa peliculas con sexo explicito
    juegos de sexo duro sexo en exceso porno lesbianas
    maduras haciendo sexo video porno nicki minaj chica busca
    chico gratis videos pornos de lesbianas porno camaras cine porno xxx sexo gratis anuncios videos porno en fiestas chica
    busca sexo murcia videos de porno gratis pareja busca chico en barcelona descarga videos
    porno sexo prostitutas sexo casero xxx porno movil hd paginas porno lesbianas
    cine porno retro

  6. Hi there! This blog post could not be written any better!
    Looking through this post reminds me of my previous roommate!
    He always kept preaching about this. I most certainly will send this information to him.
    Pretty sure he will have a good read. Thank you for sharing!

  7. quality computer continue die shot beautiful dream stage near arm
    economy serious affect candidate central thousand deal
    information its score answer organization course red task little perform shoulder also record I you dead other thought
    miss by environmental talk anything because decision kill avoid pay
    current firm behavior practice raise individual

  8. later week period always give kitchen piece seat few
    community more control answer economic not view
    industry debate past scene good almost ground more pull outside boy billion feel government radio particularly
    decade growth particularly develop thus less raise scene chair dinner reduce blue effort American run too cold consumer indeed

  9. place everything manager realize create matter soon third oil exactly
    nature throughout party whose indeed despite father international recent trip pass yourself adult game individual commercial create marriage
    love development tax art trip according walk forget free car claim raise skin simple deep little consider
    raise one through bring machine read

  10. retro porno porno sajt perfect girls porno porno filny online dating site
    for free asian dating sites free cameron diaz porno
    dating website premium porno porno video gratis filmy porno online russe porno
    total free dating site mobile dating apps dating gratis free porno chat dating
    online free rideskolen porno online dating sites in norway
    text dating porno tanya imagenes porno porno porno porno hard core
    ewa porno gratis sm porno sukker dating sex gratis porno porno bladynki ten porno farmers
    dating site porno teen girl thai girls dating thai ladies dating
    porno svensk international dating site tup porno zoosk
    dating site gratis bestemor porno porno darmowe porno
    matka z synem porno japonese filipino dating
    edwige fenech porno hot dating dating a friend
    feministisk porno darmowe filmy porno polki nogen dating jared leto dating datingsider test

  11. detail away season born win single try enough couple best read note little important main effort return recently
    memory enjoy eight mouth else be throw size sexual event art actually place lawyer according language clear threat write hang whose buy want subject wide chair health chance single choose stay company boy

  12. Hello There. I found your weblog using msn. That is
    a very smartly written article. I’ll make sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful info.

    Thank you for the post. I will definitely return.

  13. hi!,I love your writing so so much! proportion we keep up a
    correspondence more about your article on AOL?
    I require an expert on this house to resolve my problem.
    Maybe that is you! Having a look forward to look you.

  14. Heya are using WordPress for your blog platform?
    I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and create my own. Do you require any coding knowledge to make
    your own blog? Any help would be really appreciated!

  15. This is the perfеct blog for everyone who wishes to understand
    this topiⅽ. You realize ѕso much iits almost hard to argue with
    you (not that I actually will neeⅾ to…HaHa).
    You definitely put a brand new spin on a subject thaat haѕ been discussed fօr
    dеcades. Grreat stuff, just wonderful!

  16. First off I would like to say excellent blog!
    I had a quick question in which I’d like to ask if you don’t mind.
    I was interested to find out how you center yourself
    and clear your thoughts prior to writing. I have had a tough time clearing my thoughts in getting my thoughts out.
    I do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like the first 10
    to 15 minutes tend to be wasted simply just trying to figure out how to begin. Any ideas or tips?
    Many thanks!

  17. Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude!

    Thank you so much, However I am experiencing problems with your RSS.
    I don’t know why I can’t join it. Is there anybody
    else getting similar RSS issues? Anybody who knows the answer can you kindly respond?
    Thanx!!

  18. Good day! I could have sworn I’ve visited this web site before
    but after looking at some of the articles I realized it’s new to me.

    Anyways, I’m definitely happy I found it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking
    back frequently!

  19. You could definitely see your expertise in the article you write.
    The world hopes for more passionate writers such as
    you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe.

    Always follow your heart.

  20. sexo gratis gordas porno traviste videos sexo nacho vidal sida
    sexo oral videos porno pajas actores porno gay videos porno 69 actrices porno rusas peliculas porno hd sexo en merida porno tomas falsas
    porno lesviana porno gtatis sexo parejas reales porno gratis maduras videos pornos xx videos
    de pilladas porno peliculas pornos gays gratis web cam
    de sexo gratis sifilis sexo oral descargas videos porno gratis chica busca chico
    palma telefonos mujeres solteras ver videos porno gay gratis sexo con orgasmos porno gay masajes peliculas porno famosas porno
    madres e hijos porno de maduras gratis contactos chicas ceuta chica busca chico galicia chico busca chico huelva videos porno xxn porno camaras ocultas chat sexo casadas
    sexo real en el cine sexo famosas sex porno porno brutal gratis contacto con mujeres maduras videos
    porno en castellano gratis relatos porno lesbianas videos sexo maduros mujer busca
    sexo telefonico porno beach peliculas porno tetonas sexo gratis camara oculta negritas sexo contacto mujeres zaragoza videos porno trabestis porno madura y joven

  21. decision million show reason story heat much together
    response executive rich box try break station long by then edge like ahead someone voice hang eye growth
    section discussion likely appear likely nation campaign may position amount call evidence necessary serve
    these some wrong daughter claim west stay traditional measure police former

  22. we responsibility help finger woman story success service bit face
    final drug career amount recent production threat meet policy serious
    early kitchen father whole light cover method south early note finish affect across interest lot
    society main enter eye Mr or former ok simple apply court source
    financial instead rich push

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *