Regulating quality in transnational higher education: How important is intercultural context?

Peter Mcdowell

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Paper published in Proceedings


    Adopting an interdisciplinaiy approach, the paper develops a critique of the type of globalised governance framework typically invoked in the regulation of quality within transnational higher education.

    Drawing on recent literature within the cognate field of intercultural communication, the paper identifies a correspondence between, on the one hand, certain characteristics implicit in contemporary higher education audit culture, and, on the other hand, largely superseded theories of cultural interchange.

    Specifically, with transnational higher education mostly comprising an assemblage of bilateral arrangements, the regulative environment applying within any particular transnational setting usually involves transposing one of the respective national regulatory systems, and supplementing this with the other, to the extent that the sovereignty of both systems prevails ( often as union).

    Nevertheless, it is argued that the principal effect of this aggregative approach is to severely restrict the potential for institutionalised, multilateral support for the kinds of negotiated, intercultural settings often desired as a key outcome of transnational higher education, and frequently spoken of in the literature of intercultural communication.

    The paper further cautions against conceiving this situation as a technical problem requiring piecemeal reconfiguration of existing bilateral arrangements; replacing them, for example, with overlapping memoranda of cooperation and mutually interchangeable systems of governance.

    On the contrary, the paper highlights the integral significance of theoretical debate currently influencing the broader intercultural context, including controversies surrounding the central notions of globalisation, cosmopolitanism, and international language education.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationImpacts of Globalization on Quality in Higher Education
    EditorsSeameo Retrac
    Place of PublicationHo Chi Minh City, Vietnam
    PublisherSEAMEO RETRAC
    Number of pages10
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    EventInternational Conference on Impacts of Globalization on Quality of Higher Education - Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
    Duration: 20 Jun 201321 Jun 2013


    ConferenceInternational Conference on Impacts of Globalization on Quality of Higher Education


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