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Durham University

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Publication details

Li, Honghuan (2019), Internationalisation of Higher Education Strategies in China: Using Institutional Theory and Demand-Driven Analysis, in Shao, Xin & Dobson, Emma eds, Imagining Better Education. Durham, England, Durham University, School of Education, Durham, England, 106-116.

Author(s) from Durham


The term “Internationalisation of Higher Education” (IHE) stresses the “process”
instead of “outcomes” in education. It integrates an international, intercultural, or
global dimension to cope with the academic environment internationally. China
opened its markets by joining the World Trade Organisation (WTO), which
emphasises the free trade context regarding international academic mobility
coming under the domain of the freely traded market. Two main forms of
cooperative Transnational Education (TNE) ventures are the collaborative/joint
programme and international branch campuses (IBCs). For a more
comprehensive understanding of the strategy of IHE in China, the three pillars,
including regulative, normative and cultural-cognitive pillars in institutional
theory, can be employed as a possible framework to examine the organisations
and organisational change. The three pillars offer explanations of different
rationales of structures, practices and beliefs by its own mechanisms and
processes. In addition, the Demand-Driven/Benefits Analysis will be used to
explain the reason why these strategies are implemented. Four demand driven
inputs can be evaluated from the perspective of the demands in the process of
TNE, these are students’ demands, marketing demands, financial demands and
social demands.