Future of PhD’s in Pakistan | By Dr Imran Ahmed Shah


Future of PhD’s in Pakistan

IN the age of globalization, the world bodies are very much focusing on quality based education and for this tangible purpose the developed and underdeveloped countries promote PhDs.

A person holding PhD, grasps different qualities like wide knowledge, diversity, management, learning experience, patience and dexterity to deal with every challenge.

Pakistan is a developing country which needs PhDs not only in different academic institutions but also in different disciplines.

PhDs are required to have the capacity enhancement by teaching as well as by research in universities.

Higher Education Commission (HEC) of Pakistan is proposing number of programmes for higher education to enlighten our youths.

But the PhD scholars are not provided desired postings and their postdoc programmes struck in the pipeline.

The issue of unemployed and under-employed highly educated youth is common to most developing countries, and Pakistan is not accepted out of above list.

According to a recent report which says there are 1,200 jobless PhDs across the country.

Many of them hold doctorate degrees in highly specialized science subjects from the world’s best ranking universities.

Most of them got admitted to these universities on merit scholarships and even they had burn their mid night oil to complete their degrees along their sweat to make their both ends meet in aboard.

They had to work hard to obtain their degrees, and despite their best efforts to get jobs commensurate with high qualification, they neither have been absorbed in universities nor in industries or any other concerned sector which is a sheer dilemma and pitiable condition.

There is nothing surprising about this whole scenario because it is well known that matters of job are only dealt on the basis of either deep pockets, nepotism or favouritism where merit is ignored.

This shows that those who doctor their qualifications have a better chance of getting status-carrying jobs than those who have burnt the proverbial mid-night oil to attain higher education.

The level of anxiety and frustration among the highly educated is a serious malady as it is affecting not only the educated minds but discouraging the acquisition of education and has always been major halt in the way of pursuing higher education as a whole.

The unemployed PhDs have contacted all relevant fields of their degrees but their bid to get things righted have so far proved futile and have gone in vain.

The quarters concerned say now several universities are facing financial crunch, so, they are unable to absorb PhDs.

In the current scenario, educational system is trying best to meet the international standards by adopting novel and international trends imbued with academic plans.

Such positive changes can be adopted and availed from the foreign graduates, who spare years to the developed and underdeveloped countries with their experience and exposure of the international universities.

PhDs have bright future in Pakistan in the academia and industrial sector because this is an age of the specialization, where PhDs in different specializations like Information Technology, Engineering, Business Administration and Social Sciences can contribute in the development of the academia in the country.

Besides academic career, development sector is ground for the PhDs to find career, develop different projects and invest their time in uplifting economic and social status of the society.

Third and most important area of the PhD is entrepreneurship where PhDs can use their research ideas based on the opportunities, needs, and choices based on the age, gender and ethnicity.

Pakistan has vibrant market and academic entrepreneurs that can easily implement their ideas to boost business.

By establishing trade, they will contribute by creating employment opportunities, which is a contributing factor in the economic and social development of the society.

Accordingly, the HEC was established in 2002 to overcome severe shortage of PhD scholars in the country.

Prior to this there was a shortage of 38,000 doctorate-degree holders. The HEC sent a large number of PhD students to renowned international universities on scholarship to pursue their advance studies.

The HEC financed not only PhDs but also those having obtained doctorate degrees with other scholarships who returned to serve the country with the zeal and zest, but found their dreams shattered.

—The writer is contributing columnist, based in Karachi.


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