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ACA Strategic Summit 2021 – Strategic perspectives on  international higher education post COVID-19

In a rapidly changing higher education context, organisational leaders need to continuously enhance their capacity to foster organisational performance and deliver sustainable change and value. High-level peer exchange is a compelling way not only to support top leaders in these tasks, but also to foster coordination and synergies at different levels.   The leadership of ACA members and like organisations often face similar challenges, while supporting the cause of international higher education, as they have to stay abreast of evolving regulatory frameworks and policy priorities at different levels and engage with multiple stakeholders. The established network of ACA members provides a unique platform for a high-level strategic exchange of insights, experience and knowledge in support of ‘what works’ in institutional development and best practice in common priority areas.    In response to these considerations, in 2021 ACA is starting a new series of high-level, by invitation only events – the ACA Strategic Summits. The aim of these distinct gatherings is to connect the top leadership of the member organisations and selected guests on an annual basis, around key topics for international higher education. The theme of the 2021 ACA Strategic Summit is Strategic perspectives on international higher education post COVID-19.    The event is meant as a response to the unprecedented challenges and changes in international higher education we have been lately addressing, due to the protracted Covid-19 pandemic and rising nationalism, on the one hand, and to the growing importance of international strategic collaborations globally, on the other.   The programme focuses on the role of international higher education in the post-pandemic world in terms of its impact both on the evolution the higher education sector and on the recovery and resilience of society in general. The discussion will also focus on how ACA members and like organisations need to change themselves in order to support these wider processes of change. While taking stock of impact to date, the Summit exchanges will facilitate the joint crafting of some clear paths forward, exiting the emergency response stage, moving post pandemic, and reflecting the wider strategic implications and role of funding agencies in shaping the future of internationalisation in higher education.  Though the Summits are invitation-only events, we are happy to share major takeaways and discuss related opportunities. If you are interested in learning more, please contact the ACA Secretariat: secretariat@aca-secretariat.be. ...

ACA Think Pieces

ACA Think Pieces: Inclusion in International Higher Education: European Perspectives and Insights

At the start of this year, 2021, ACA prioritised learning more about and supporting inclusion in international higher education in the context of Europe. We decided to publish our insights along the way with the help of experts in the area of inclusion through a new ACA Think Piece series, Inclusion in International Higher Education: European Perspectives & Insights.  This March we officially launched Inclusion in International Higher Education: European Perspectives & Insights. Towards the end of every month up to December 2021, the expert authors of this inclusion-focused series will provide brief, candid insights meant to help break institutional taboos in key areas for advancing the policy and institutional work in widening inclusion in international higher education activities.  This month’s Think Piece – Supporting higher education institutions to develop strategic plans for more inclusive mobilities – the third in the series, is authored by distinguished colleagues, Valérie Van Hees, Coordinator, and Dominique Montagnese, Inclusive mobility expert, both from the Support Centre for Inclusive Higher Education (SIHO), Belgium. The article illustrates the gap between inclusion desires and realities, points to obstacles in inclusive mobility and offers practical recommendations for designing more inclusive internationalisation strategies and mobilities.    Despite the signalled prioritisation of inclusion in recent European Higher Education Area (EHEA) commitments, Valérie and Dominique point to the need for more concrete objectives and action from national systems. To support these goals, the authors make the urgent case for more data collection and impact assessments on underrepresented students. In order to begin remedying the divide between inclusion-related mobility ambitions and realities, the piece concludes by offering frameworks and focused reflection as starting points for designing and updating inclusion strategies and building institutional communities.  Read full article...

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