IIE Network - Fall 2013 - (Page 42)

CROSSBORDER EDUCATION From Multi-national Universities to Education Hubs to Edu-glomerates? By Jane Knight INTERNATIONALIZATION HAS TRANSFORMED higher education in the past three decades. During this same time period, it has undergone major changes itself. This is especially true for crossborder education. During the past 10 years, crossborder education has grown in scope and scale. There has been an explosion in student mobility and, along with this, exponential growth in the number of branch campuses, double/joint degree programs, franchise and twinning arrangements, and MOOCs. These increased numbers have brought with them benefits and risks for the sending and receiving countries, as well as students. A key development in crossborder education has been the increase in multi-national universities with branch campuses, research centers and networking/recruitment offices located in different parts of the world. Education hubs build on the increase in student mobility, the proliferation of branch campuses, and the increase in collaborative research and innovation initiatives. These initiatives most often involve multi-national higher education institutions. But what will follow or emerge from the development of multi-national universities and education hubs—Edu-glomerates? First a few words about education hubs. Education hubs come in different shapes and sizes. They represent a new generation of crossborder education activities, where critical mass, co-location and collaboration among international and local universities, students, research institutes and private industry are key. A variety of factors drive countries to position themselves as an education hub. These factors include the increasing demand for higher education—especially with a foreign credential, income generation, soft power, modernization of the domestic tertiary education sector, economic competitiveness, the need for trained work force, and a desire to move to a knowledge- or service-based economy. In response to these demands, three different types of education hubs are being 42 developed: the student hub, the talent hub, and the knowledge/innovation hub. The student hub is the most prevalent. The student hub focuses on the recruitment of international students, as well as foreign education providers. The primary objectives are to provide increased access for local, expatriate and international students; to modernize and internationalize domestic higher education institutions; to generate revenue from international student fees; and to increase profile and competitiveness in the international student education market. Education hubs can exist at the country, zone or city level. Their most important feature is an intense collaboration and networking among international and local actors (students, education and training providers, research centers, private companies). But in education cities and education free zones such as the United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Qatar and Korea, co-location is common and often involves sharing of common facilities such as libraries, classrooms, recreational facilities and accommodation. Multi-national universities are individual institutions that have satellite operations in other countries, strategic international networks, collaborative degree programs, global research projects; in short, a broad international engagement program. It is probable that these will multiply in the future through strategic alliances with overseas partners and investors, and a more liberalized higher education market. But, edu-glomerates may emerge as an alternative to a multi-national university and be the next phase of an education hub. An edu-glomerate builds on the satellite operations of a multi-national university and extends the concept of economic free education zones or hubs. It can be a private or government initiative that offers a marketplace of education and training providers and programs, housed in the same location and using common facilities. Students can mix and match individual courses from a variety of local or international providers using a A key development in crossborder education has been the increase in multi-national universities with branch campuses, research centers and networking/ recruitment offices located in different parts of the world. common and recognized credit system. Such a credit system can be specific to the eduglomerate or based on an existing national or regional academic credit system. In this scenario, the key issue is the provider of the academic qualification, and not the provider of the actual course work. The edu-glomerate could validate completed course work (both face to face in the education city or hub, and virtual in the case of MOOCs) and could offer its own credential under a national licensing scheme, or alternatively, individual providers could establish their own prerequisites for conferring their degree based on accepting completed coursework from other providers. In this scenario, the franchising of the credential is more important than franchising the academic program itself. Edu-glomerates may sound like science fiction and a long way from today’s reality. A couple of decades ago the same could have been said about branch campuses, or education hubs, or even MOOCs. Stay tuned. The only constant these days in crossborder education is innovation, and the concept of edu-glomerate may be the next ‘big thing in international education.’ ■ Jane Knight is adjunct professor for the Department of Leadership, Higher and Adult Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. www.iie.org/iienetworker http://www.iie.org/iienetworker

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IIE Network - Fall 2013

A Message from Allan E. Goodman
Megatrends: Predicting the Future of International Education
Considering Study Abroad’s Past to Prepare for its Future
The Promise of International Education: Building a More Just and Elevated Civil Society
Global Research and Commercialization: An Under-the-Radar Next Big Thing
Clustering Innovation and Industry: New Opportunities for Europe
Connecting the Dots: Integrating Engagement with International Stakeholders
The Rise of Real-time, Online International Recruitment
Hold on to Your Hats, MOOCs... Here Come the TOQUES!
The Global Youth Engagement Platform: A Peace Corps for the 21st Century
Growing Globally Competent Students to Achieve True Internationalization
Beyond Ourselves: Embracing Our Global Responsibilities
India: Expansion, Equity, Excellence
The Growing World of Collaborative Internationalization: Taking Partnerships to the Next Level
From Multi-national Universities to Education Hubs to Edu-glomerates?
Advertisers Index
Beyond the Numbers: The Who, How and What of Global Student Mobility

IIE Network - Fall 2013