ACA 20th anniversary conference: Internationalisation and international mobility. Where do we stand, where are we heading?

The Hague, 9-11 June 2013


On ACA’s 20th birthday, what would be more appropriate than to revisit ACA’s key themes, international mobility and internationalisation more widely? In line with this, our jubilee conference bears the name Internationalisation and international mobility. Where do we stand, where are we heading? We will address theses issues from a double perspective: a historical one, which will establish where we have come from and what we have already achieved. And a forward-looking one, which shall try to anticipate future developments in internationalization and mobility.  Important sub-themes in the mobility area will be ‘mobility drivers’ and mobility policies and strategies, ‘mobility windows’, the role of mobility for the enhancement of employability, and Europe’s pet concept of ‘balanced mobility’. In the area of internationalization, we will focus on different forms of ‘internationalization at home’, such as English-medium programmes and intercultural education, amongst others. A special focus will be on the ethics of internationalization, where we are asking the question if and under which conditions can there be non-commercial internationalization, which would contribute to solutions to the world’s most pressing problems.

In one of the closing keynotes, Ulrich Grothus, Deputy Secretary General of DAAD, will address the crisis of Europe and what European higher education can do to help solve it. For the opening keynote, we have asked the former Dutch Foreign Minister Ben Bot for an assessment of global conflicts and cooperation.  But these are not the only distinguished speakers who are expecting you. In the choice of presenters, we remain loyal to our old principle: only the best.

Since this is an Anniversary Conference, ACA will also look back onto 20 years of internationalization and look forward to the future of it, in the form of a ‘sofa chat’ between ACA’s founding fathers, past and present Presidents and Directors.

Sessions and workshops

This year’s Annual conference will see fewer plenaries and more workshops than earlier events of its sort. The opening and closing keynotes apart, we will have two plenary sessions, dedicated to mobility and internationalization at home respectively. In addition, there will be two sessions with parallel workshops, devoted to the different forms of student mobility (or ‘mobilities’) and to the ‘ethics of internationalisation’.  By creating more space for workshops, we intend to make for a more interactive experience of participants.

As has become a good tradition, the pre-conference day will consist of a discovery of the host city - Den Haag - and the conference welcome reception.  We shall of course also stick to our much-loved conference dinner, an occasion for relaxed and inspiring networking fuelled by fine food and drink.

The conference will be held in the unique setting of the Nieuwe Kirk in the centre of The Hague.

Target groups

This ACA jubilee conference, like all the others, addresses rectors and vice-rectors of universities and colleges, senior international relations staff, representatives of European and global associations, international organisations and national governments. We expect 300-plus participants, from Europe and beyond.

Like its predecessor events, this Annual Conference is intended for a broad range of audiences, from government, international organisations, NGOs and, above all, higher education institutions.  From among the latter, we particularly address institutional leaders and staff specialising in strategic affairs and internationalisation.


In the selection of speakers, we follow a simple policy: only the best. Presenters at an ACA Annual Conference are chosen exclusively from a small group of internationally reputed experts from the fields of higher education research and higher education policy. We do not invite plenary speakers we have not personally seen in front of an audience.