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Brussels, 27 March 2009

What's in a name? The changing nature of mobility


The challenge for this second ACA European Policy Seminar of 2009 was to decipher the current meaning of a much debated on phenomenon in the area of higher education, namely that of mobility. For several decades, students and staff mobility (mainly short term) has been one of the top priorities in the European Union support for higher education. Notwithstanding, over the past ten years or so, there have been significant changes in conceptualizing and approaching mobility: there has been a move back to prioritizing recruitment of foreign degree students and towards analysing more critically the real impacts of mobility on institutions, on their degree of internationalisation, and on the mobile individuals.

In this new context, new questions arise: is mobility an objective in itself, or means to some other worthy ends? How well does mobility perform in responding to the expectations set on it and what eventual ‘side-effects’ has it on the individuals and institutions involved? Is mobility accessible to all those interested, and is being mobile an advantage? Will there be more of the same in the future, or can we expect to see significantly changing mobility patterns, types, and directions? These are some of the questions that this seminar has addresssed through the contribution of several high-caliber experts in the field of international higher education.


Thursday 26 March 2009

19:30         Seminar dinner @ Stekerlapatte

Friday 27 March 2009


Registrations and coffee


Welcome and introduction
Maria Kelo, Senior Officer, ACA


Internationalisation and mobility
Bernd Wächter, Director, ACA


Mobility obstacles and the status of European students
Andrea Riedel, International coordination team, Eurostudent IV




Attracting some of the best: mobility of the highly skilled
Hans de Wit, International Higher Education Consultant/Editor Journal of Studies in International Education


Does the international mobility of programmes and institutions also increase student mobility?
Neil Kemp, Visiting Fellow and Consultant, Institute of Education




Intercultural impacts of mobility
Jeanine Gregersen-Hermans, Director of Communication and Spokesperson of the Executive Board, Maastricht University


The benefits of mobility – an individual perspective
Felicitas Mantik, Dipl.-Arch., John Robertson Architects

A former Erasmus student


Looking into the crystal ball: new tools for mobility forecasting
Kevin Van-Cauter, Higher Education Adviser, British Council


Wrap-up and goodbye


End of seminar


Bernd Wächter

Bernd Wächter is the Director of the Academic Cooperation Association (ACA). In this capacity, which he has held since 1998, he bears overall responsibility for the implementation of all ACA policy. Earlier on (1995 – 1997), he was the Head of the Erasmus Department in the then Socrates and Youth TAO, which implemented the centralised parts of the Erasmus Programme on behalf of the European Commission. Between 1992 and 1995, he headed the German national agency for the Erasmus Programme inside the DAAD, which also had important national information functions for the COMETT, LINGUA and TEMPUS schemes. His experience with internationalisation also relates to the institutional level, through his functions as head of the international office of the Fachhochschule Darmstadt, and as a departmental coordinator of international relations at the Gesamthochschule Kassel. He has also worked for the British Council. Bernd Wächter has published and lectured widely on issues of Europeanisation and internationalisation of higher education. He is the editor of the ACA Papers on International Cooperation in Education.

Andrea Riedel

Andrea Riedel is a member of the international coordination team for EUROSTUDENT. She is especially involved in preparing the questionnaire for the new (fourth) round of the survey. The EUROSTUDENT survey is split up into four main topics: study background, current study situation, living conditions and mobility. Andrea Riedel’s focus is on the conception of international mobility.

Besides, she contributed to the data report that was prepared for the “Bologna-Follow-up-group on mobility and social dimension”, including information about all the countries taking part in the Bologna process. She also gained experience in coordinating two international master programmes conducted by the University of Potsdam and supported by InWEnt (Capacity Building International, Germany).

Hans de Wit

Hans de Wit is a private consultant and researcher for De Wit International Higher Education Consultancy. He is the co-editor of the ‘Journal of Studies in International Education’ (Association for Studies in International Education/SAGE publishers).

He was founding dean of Windesheim Honours College of the VU Amsterdam/Windesheim Hogeschool, Zwolle. Before, he was director of the Hague Forum for Judicial Expertise in 2005-2006. He has been director of the Office of Foreign Relations, vice-president for International Affairs and senior adviser International at the University of Amsterdam, in the period 1986-2005, and director of International Relations at Tilburg University in 1981-1985. He has a bachelor, master and PhD from the University of Amsterdam.

He has written books and articles on international education and is actively involved in assessment and consultancy in international education, for organisations like the European Commission, World Bank, IMHE/OECD, and ESMU. He has undertaken Quality Reviews of a great number of institutions of higher education in the framework of the Visiting Advisors Program (VAP), IQRP, IQR, Eurostrat.  

Hans de Wit is founding member and past president of the European Association for International Education (EAIE). Currently he is, among other positions, member of the Board of Trustees of World Education Services (New York).

Neil Kemp

Neil has contributed to a wide range of education and training projects in over 20 countries. He has lived and worked in Asia for 20 years, including eight years each in Indonesia and India where he was British Council director. In the UK, since 2000, he was responsible for developing the Education UK Partnership and led on the Prime Minister’s Initiative for international education (the PMI). He served on the UK government’s policy committee for education exports, the Education and Training Export Group.

He started employment as an apprentice in industry and, after a physical sciences degree, completed a doctorate in electron spectroscopy at Swansea University. He then developed an interest in the economics of education and education planning at the Institute of Education, University of London, where he is now a Visiting Fellow. His professional interests and publications relate to the internationalisation of education, higher education policy, the role of the independent sector in higher education, particularly in developing countries, TNE and international student mobility.

For the last 3 years he has also been managing his own international education consultancy and his clients include universities; the UK’s Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills; the British Council; Academic Cooperation Association, Brussels; Danish Government (CIRIUS); Swedish Institute; and Universities UK. He is the professional adviser to the UK-India Education and Research Initiative and Board Member at Council for Education in the Commonwealth and Open University Worldwide.

His main interests outside education are coaching athletics, cycling, jazz and blues.

Jeanine Gregersen-Hermans

Jeanine Gregersen – Hermans (1958) currently is employed as director Marketing and Communications and Spokes Person of the Executive Board at Maastricht University, The Netherlands. Until 1997 she worked as dean for international students at Wageningen University, The Netherlands. During that period she developed courses on intercultural communication as part of the professional training programme of the European Association for International Education. After a period as secretary general of UNICA she returned in 2000 to the Netherlands to take up the position of head educational marketing at Wageningen. Over the years Jeanine presented at numerous conferences and seminars world wide on topics of intercultural communication and marketing of higher education. She is co-author of the EAIE occasional paper “Culture Matters” (2004) and contributed with a chapter on “The X-factor, Internationalisation with a small ‘c’” in the EAIE/EAIR book “Europe’s Response to globalization” (2005). Her latest article “High Potentials: A CEO Perspective”is published in the Journal of Studies in International Education (2007 11: 510-521). As an expert Jeanine has participated the branding of Higher Education for the Netherlands.

Jeanine holds a masters degree in psychology and is additionally connected to the Maastricht School of Governance as a research fellow on internationalization of Higher Education in Europe.

Felicitas Mantik

Felicitas Mantik was born in Hanover, Germany. She studied architecture at the universities Braunschweig and Kassel and spend an Erasmus semester in Spain (DAAD). During her studies she received a scholarship by the German National Academic Foundation that included international summer academies and language courses. Further middle- to long-term stays abroad included a student exchange to Venezuela (AFS), au-pair work in France (AFJE) and practical experience in Italy (IBO). Felicitas has been working for 7 years as a volunteer for AFS and has maintained a friendly contact with the DAAD. Since 2006 she is working and living in London.

Kevin Van-Cauter

Kevin Van-Cauter is currently Higher Education Adviser at the British Council, where he has worked in various roles since 1989. Kevin advises on Higher Education policy in the UK, and specialises in the area Transnational Education (TNE), as well as the internationalisation of Higher Education, marketing and branding of UK education , UK qualifications and education partnerships. Previous roles include advising on Distance Learning policy and Marketing UK Education.

Kevin graduated from the Open University in 1997 with  Bachelor degree (honours) majoring in International Relations, and a Masters in Public Administration also with the Open University in 2008. Kevin has written several articles on UK Transnational education and presented at numerous conferences on the subject.  He co-authored Vision 2020 (published in 2003)  the British Council’s first attempt at forecasting international student mobility.

Maria Kelo

Maria Kelo is Senior Officer at the Academic Cooperation Association (ACA). In this role, which she has held since 2003, she is responsible for the acquisition, development and implementation of ACA projects, the organisation of ACA conferences and seminars, as well as ACA’s public relations activities including representing the association at international fora. Recently she completed a large-scale study on transnational education and is currently managing a project on services for international degree students in European higher education. Before her appointment at ACA Maria Kelo worked as a researcher for Eurydice (the Information Network on Education in Europe). She has also worked as an intern at the DG for Education and Culture of the European Commission. Maria has a MSc in Philosophy, Policy, and Social Value from the London School of Economics.

Maria Kelo is the author of Support for International Students in Higher Education. Practice and Principles (2006), the co-author of Brain Drain and Brain Gain – migration in the European Union after Enlargement (Kelo and Wächter, 2004) and The Admission of International Students into Higher Education (Muche, Kelo and Wächter, 2004). She is the co-editor of EURODATA – Student mobility in European higher education (Kelo, Teichler, Wächter, eds., 2006) and the editor of The Future of the University. Translating Lisbon into Practice (2006), and Beyond 2010. Priorities and Challenges for Higher Education in the Next Decade (2008).


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