Dissatisfaction over undergraduate education seems to be persistent and has been jeopardized by the boost in research performance as fuelled by global rankings. Yet it will continue to be the cornerstone and a key mission of higher education. Hence the tide is shifting and the global debate on “the world-class university” is increasingly inclusive towards excellence in teaching and learning. A renewed focus on liberal arts education is part of this global debate on redefining excellence.
The paper examines the behavior of universities at the level of the individual institution to create a taxonomy of actions and logics used to initiate international activities, engagements, and academic programs. The taxonomy is organized utilizing the concepts of activity clusters, modes of engagement, and institutional logics. Its purpose is to provide a framework for future research as well as a tool for scholars and practitioners to better analyze and understand what has become a rush by many universities to become more engaged globally.
The paper provides an initial international comparative empirical assessment of international branch campuses (IBCs) worldwide. Building on neo-institutional theory and organizational ecology, it sheds light on the new organizational form by analyzing their founding age of the home university and IBC mortality.
It’s a familiar if not fully explained paradigm. A “World Class University” (WCU) is supposed to have highly ranked research output, a culture of excellence, great facilities, and a brand name that transcends national borders. But perhaps most importantly, the particular institution needs to sit in the upper echelons of one or more world rankings generated each year by non-profit and for-profit entities. That is the ultimate proof for many government ministers and for much of the global higher education community.
This essay provides an outline of three theoretical perspectives to study the impact of global competition on organizational change at universities. The perspective of neoliberal economics portrays global competition as competition of universities in the global higher education market. Universities transform towards greater efficiency with the goal of having a larger market share. The political economy perspective suggests that global competition in higher education is an emergent property of competitive relations among nation states.
The acceptance of new growth theory relates, in part, to a number of highly touted regional success stories – or what I term “Knowledge Based Economic Areas” (KBEAs) in this and past essays. The United States, and California in particular, is viewed as perhaps the most robust creators of KBEAs, providing an influential model that is visited and revisited by business and government leaders, and other Flagship (or leading national) universities, that wish to replicate their strengths within their own cultural and political terms.
A singular vision has propelled higher education and ministries of education in Asia since the new millennium. It is a vision launched by the once rising tide of a globalized world order that spilled into higher education: in order to be competitive on the world scene, each Asian country had to build “World Class Universities,” which could be compared and rank-ordered with the pre-eminent research universities of America, Britain and elsewhere. And if the pre-eminent American and British research universities could
There is growing evidence that students throughout the world no longer see the US as the primary place to study; that in some form this correlates with a rise in perceived quality and prestige in the EU and elsewhere; and further, that this may mean a continued decline in the US’s market share of international students. There clearly are a complex set of variables that will influence international education and global labor markets, including the current global economic recession.