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In the early stages of internationalisation, universities have typically focused on international student recruitment and accumulating large numbers of bilateral international university partnerships. Often these partnerships had little strategic value other than as a response to pressure to internationalise. Frequently these partnerships went no further than signatures on a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and were not operationalised in any way. While the stated intent of such MoUs was often promoting research collaboration and cooperation, this was rarely communicated to the faculty members who could have made this a reality. In recent years, a number of global university networks have been established, many of which now have waiting lists of potential members. This session will provide an overview of the different types of university networks and institutional partnerships being established across the world and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the alternative models. It will also consider the benefits associated with membership of a global network, as opposed to institutions developing alliances with a more specific focus. Additionally, institutional strategies aimed at encouraging widespread participation and involvement in these partnerships across the university and beyond the international office will be discussed.
Asia-Pacific Association for International Education (APAIE) 5th Annual Conference, Griffith University, Brisbane, April 2010