Open for business

Small countries are open for higher education business

A taster for a session to be delivered at next week’s International Leadership Conference at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus: this piece in Times Higher Education covers the openness of some countries in relation to higher education.

The article reports on a session which Janet Ilieva of the British Council is delivering at the conference in which she will refer to the fact that small countries often have the most “open” higher education systems, just as their economies are the most open to international trade:

Janet Ilieva, head of research for education intelligence, cited Hong Kong, Singapore and the Netherlands as examples of small countries with higher education systems that were open to imports and exports in terms of students, academics and institutions.

But she said that some others with ambitions to join the list, particularly a few Gulf states, were struggling to do so because of “over-regulation” by their governments.

Her comments were made in an interview with Times Higher Education ahead of a conference on International Leadership: Managing Global Universities to be held at the University of Nottingham Malaysia campus next week.

Dr Ilieva is due to present the findings of a study into the openness of higher education in 22 different countries, including a subset of eight countries in Southeast Asia.

Of these, Hong Kong was ranked top, followed by South Korea and Malaysia.

However, Dr Ilieva said that the ranking misrepresented the openness of Singapore (rated seventh in the region), because it looked only at national policy.

In Singapore, she said, the government had handed over responsibility for many policy decisions to the institutions themselves.

Looking forward to it.

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