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Regional Higher Education Cooperation - Evolution of an Analytical Framework-. International Symposium Regional and Inter-regional Cooperation of Universities University of Tokyo February 17, 2011 Professor Jane Knight Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

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Regional higher education cooperation evolution of an analytical framework

Regional Higher Education Cooperation -Evolution of an Analytical Framework-

International Symposium

Regional and Inter-regional Cooperation of Universities

University of Tokyo

February 17, 2011

Professor Jane Knight

Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

University of Toronto, Canada

Focus of presentation
Focus of Presentation

  • HE cooperation within the context of regionalization

    Introduce ‘Analytical Framework for Regionalization of Higher Education’

  • Part of comparative study on regionalization of HE in Asia, Africa, and Latin America

  • Invite reflection on key issues and the way forward for closer HE regional cooperation in Asia

© Knight 2011

Outline of presentation
Outline of Presentation

  • Regionalization trends in general

  • HE regional initiatives in Africa and Asia

  • 4 lines of inquiry- HE and regional cooperation

  • Continuum from regional cooperation to regional integration

  • 3 approaches to HE regionalization

  • Questions and issues

© Knight 2011

Regionalization trends
Regionalization trends

  • More emphasis on economic and political regional integration

  • Growing labour mobility within regions

  • Popular mass culture moving within regions

  • Increased intra-regional collaboration among “knowledge communities’

  • More intra-regional HE academic mobility, networks and collaborative activities

  • Influence of Bologna process

© Knight 2011

Recent or planned developments

in Asia and Africa for closer

Higher Education regional cooperation

………. Some examples

*in addition to ongoing bilateral and multi-lateral

HEI collaborations

© Knight 2011

He regionalization in africa 1
HE Regionalization in Africa -1

Recent and Upcoming Developments

  • Pan- African University (5 HEIs in 5 regions)

  • African Quality Rating Mechanism (AQRM)

  • AfriQAN- network of QA agencies

  • Nyerere African Scholarship Scheme

  • Updated Arusha convention- Qualifications Rec

  • Regional Centres of Excellence

  • OER Africa

  • NRENS- Research and Education Networks

  • African Higher Education and Research Space

© Knight 2011

He regionalization in africa 2
HE regionalization in Africa - 2

Key Actors/Drivers

  • AAU- Ass of African Universities

  • AU- African Union

  • ADEA- Ass for the Development of Ed in Africa

  • Regional University Associations/ HEIs


      Approach is to strengthen Regional University Ass to build pan African initiatives and HE Space

© Knight 2011

He regionalization in asia 1
HE Regionalization in Asia- 1

Recent and Planned Developments


  • MIT- Mobility program among Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand (SEAMEO/RIHED)

  • Campus Asia- Mobility among Japan, Korea, China

  • UMAP (10 years old)

  • Asian Academic Credit System (UCTS,ACTS)

  • AP UNESCO convention on recognition of qualifications

© Knight 2011

He regionalization in asia 2
HE Regionalization in Asia-2



  • East Asia Summit



  • APEC

  • ASEM

  • Regional Bureau for UNESCO ?

© Knight 2011

Diversity of concepts issues and approaches
Diversity of Concepts, issues and approaches

A review of

policy documents, conference reports,

media articles, academic papers, blogs shows

a multitude of issues, terms and approaches

to describe the growing importance of

regional considerations in Higher Education

© Knight 2011

Four lines of inquiry
Four Lines of Inquiry

  • Impact of regionalism on HE

  • Regionalization of HE

  • HE as a tool for regional integration

  • Inter-regional cooperation in HE

© Knight 2011

Regional ism ization tion
Regional …….ism ization tion


-Regionalization ….Process

-Regional Integration…. Condition

Definition of region is complex and challenging

- functional, political, geographic, cultural, historic

- multi-faceted and multi-layered

© Knight 2011

Multitude of Terms

-Confusion and Complexity-











© Knight 2011












Continuum of Regionalization- Region Building

© Knight 2011

Continuum of regional building from cooperation to i ntegration
Continuum of Regional Building From cooperation to integration

Progression on the Continuum ???

Gradual ……………………………Quantum Leap

Informal ……………………………………… Formal

Internal ………………………………………External

Bottom Up ……………………………… Top Down

Reactive ………….Proactive..…….. Strategic

© Knight 2011

3 approaches to regionalization of he analytical framework
3 Approaches to Regionalization of HE -Analytical Framework-

  • Functional Approach

  • Structural Approach

  • Political Approach

© Knight 2011




Interdependent Relationship Among 3 Approaches

© Knight 2011

3 approaches to regionalization of he
3 Approaches to Regionalization of HE

  • Functional Approach

    • Alignment of systems

    • Collaborative Programs

  • Structural Approach

    • Major actors and frameworks

      ‘Organizational architecture’

  • Political Approach

    • Declarations, summits, treaties

© Knight 2011

Functional he regionalization 1
Functional HE Regionalization - 1

  • Alignment of Systems

    • Quality Assurance

    • Academic credit system

    • Degree levels

    • Qualifications’ recognition

    • Academic Years/Semesters

    • Qualification Frameworks

    • ITC platforms

© Knight 2011

Functional he regionalization 2
Functional HE Regionalization -2

Collaborative Programs

  • Academic Mobility

    • student, professor, scholar, administrators

  • Crossborder programs and providers

    • branch campus, twinning, franchise, double/joint degrees, sandwich programs

  • Institutional agreements

  • Research networks and projects

  • Centres of excellence

  • Pan-regional university

  • © Knight 2011

    Structural he regionalization
    Structural HE Regionalization

    Organizational Architecture

    • Types

      • Governmental bodies

      • Professional/NGOs organizations

      • Networks

      • Foundations/ Funders/

    • Levels

      • Global- Regional, Sub-regional, Inter-regional

    © Knight 2011

    Political he regionalization
    Political HE Regionalization

    • Declarations

    • Agreements/Conventions/Treaties

    • Summits

    © Knight 2011









    • Alignment of Systems

    • Collaborative Programs

    • Organizations

    • Networks

    • Frameworks

    • Declarations

    • Agreements/Treaties

    • Summits

    Questions and issues
    Questions and issues?

    Is regionalization of HE in Asia rhetoric or a new reality?

    Should it be informal or intentional? Bottom up or top down? Is there an optimal balance?

    Is regionalization of HE being driven by HE actors or by other sectors- economic and political? Or both?

    What are the key rationales driving HE regionalization? Who benefits?

    © Knight 2011

    Thank you

    [email protected]

    I look forward to your comments on the framework and suggestions for improvement.

    Knight, Jane (2011) Regionalization of Higher Education: Towards an Analytical Framework for East Asia

    GIARI Working Paper to be published

    © Knight 2011