Frontiers of Education in China

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 33–58 | Cite as

Transnational Edu-Business in China: A Case Study of Culturalist Market-Making from Finland

  • Fred DervinEmail author
  • Ashley Simpson
Research Article


This article examines a scholar’s discourses related to edu-business in the context of Sino-Finnish edu-business. Based on a critical approach to interculturality, and the decade-long critiques of culturalism, a case study serves as an illustration of the use of the concept of culture by a scholar from Finland to retail Finnish education in China. The results show a reliance on an old and highly criticized conception of culture and a tendency to exoticize and aggrandize Finland, the Finns and Finnish education. Yet a hint at similarities between “Asians” and Finns represents an interesting move from typical differentialist discourses. The article ends with a call for taking interdisciplinarity and ethics into account in edu-business activities in academia.


edu-business Finland culturalism interculturality education export 


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Copyright information

© Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Educational SciencesUniversity of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland
  2. 2.School of Foreign StudiesShanghai University of Finance and EconomicsShanghaiChina

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