Urge to merge? It’s under wraps (Republic of Ireland)

A delayed review of higher education in the Republic of Ireland urges the merger of two of the country’s top institutions, it has been reported. The controversial report, commissioned by the Higher Education Authority, reportedly recommends the merger of University College Dublin and Trinity College Dublin, among other sweeping changes to the sector. The report was due to be circulated among university presidents and college heads last week, but its release has been postponed after discussions between the HEA and the Department of Education and Skills, The Irish Times reported. In a letter to sector leaders on 27 September, Tom Boland, the HEA’s chief executive, wrote that more time was needed “for clarification on policy issues and for wider consultation”. According to the newspaper, the unpublished report – written by an international panel chaired by Frans Van Vught, a Dutch academic – proposes that Ireland’s 20-plus higher education colleges be consolidated into just six institutions.

Source: Times Higher Education http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/story.asp?sectioncode=26&storycode=421359&c=1