Internationalisation revisited

Brussels, 2 December 2011


The vast majority of analysts and actors in international higher education concede that internationalisation has come a long way during the past two decades. It moved from being a peripheral trait of institutional activities to the very core of institutional (and sometimes national-level) strategies, not only in the West, but in most corners of the world. In light of the overall pace and complexity of change in higher education in recent years, we cannot help but wonder if our understanding of internationalisation has managed to keep up with ever changing international, national and institutional realities. What do we truly mean when we talk about internationalisation today? What kind of activities and ambitions are now at the core of internationalisation? Are they the same as ten, twenty years ago, or have they tremendously changed? Was/is there a shared understanding of internationalisation at all, or should we rather use the plural when referring to this phenomenon? And more importantly, what are the implications for the years to come? What kind of internationalisation do we want and need for the future?

We find it timelier than ever to ask these questions and encourage a general reflection around this central concept. The last ACA European Policy Seminar (EPS) of the year - Internationalisation revisited - will provide a venue for this pressing debate, in the company of a host of highly-inspiring and extremely knowledgeable speakers from around the world.  The agenda will include: overviews of ongoing discussions within international fora and organisations; examinations of some of the “traditional” internationalisation activities (from cross-border student mobility, to curricular internationalisation and international partnerships) and recent trends in these areas; as well as nuanced views of this process from the institutional level.

31st in the series “European Policy Seminars” of the Academic Cooperation Association