Asia-Pacific Universities in the Global Space: Visions of University Presidents

  • Simon MarginsonEmail author
Part of the Higher Education Dynamics book series (HEDY, volume 36)


This chapter is concerned with the global perspectives and strategies of eight Asia-Pacific research universities, together with five universities from four other countries. Drawing on case studies conducted in one leading national research university in each of 12 countries, it focuses on the interviews with the university head—the president, rector or vice-chancellor. The institutions in the study are from Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United States, Mexico, and for contrast two universities in the Netherlands. The presidents have broadly similar readings of the global setting, though their strategic circumstances and resources vary, according to national factors. All are closely focused on global standing and effectiveness; all but two are focused on global rankings (the exceptional presidents are solely focused on national comparisons). There is a common concern to be a ‘world-class’ university. This ambition is felt most keenly by those with the least material capacity to achieve it. Many find their national governments are insufficiently supportive of the global mission. The presidents discuss how they read the global environment and strategize it. The Internet is playing an ever-increasing role as a zone of strategic imagining; and most presidents emphasize the intelligence gleaned from each other in collaborative networks. Both competition and collaboration are endemic to strategy.


Global Dimension Research Research Imagination Imagination Transnational Education Government Government 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for the Study of Higher Education (CSHE)University of MelbourneMelbourneAustralia

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