Internationalisation of universities is unethical

Activity: Talks and presentationsTalks and presentations in private or public companies


The main theme of this lecture is that advanced internationalisation of universities is unethical. A process model of university internationalisation and propositions to guide future research are put forward.

It has become an accepted practice for universities to incorporate internationalisation in their mission statements and strategic plans. Universities have recently embraced the trend or fad of advanced internationalisation, e.g., when a university sets up a branch campus or other greenfield investments as independent institutions in a foreign country. Conventional wisdom suggests that universities during such endeavours should adapt their strategies, resources, structures and organization to international environments.

However, recent examples of university internationalisation failures and withdrawals from international markets raise concerns about the sustainability of university internationalisation efforts as well as about the erosion of individual and university-wide autonomy. A conjecture emerges that the process of university internationalisation and its sustainability are determined by the structure and exercise of university autonomy settings at home and in the host countries, and that the process itself cannot be successfully achieved and maintained without changes in the autonomy settings.
PeriodApr 2016
Held atUnknown external organisation


  • University internationalization
  • University autonomy
  • De-internationalization
  • Withdrawal
  • Theory building