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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 MontagneseInclusive 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. 

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