CGHE 2020 Annual Conference webinar: Public good in higher education across international boundaries

16th June 2020 : 14:00 - 15:00

Category: Webinar

Research Group: Higher Education

Speaker: Thomas Brotherhood, CGHE and Lili Yang, CGHE

Location: Online

Convener: Simon Marginson

Audience: Public

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the CGHE conference did not go ahead this year as planned on 1 April at Senate House, University of London. Instead we are bringing to a larger worldwide audience the pick of this year’s conference papers as a webinar series, starting with papers from CGHE’s doctoral students, currently in the final year of their studies at the University of Oxford, Thomas Brotherhood from the UK and Lili Yang from China.


How do international students navigate their post-study options?

Thomas Brotherhood

Tom draws on international students’ extended narratives for insight into their agency, their capacity to determine their education and life pathways amid the constraints of the migration system in the country of study. International students have become a very large group of actors in the higher education sector, but perhaps it is only now, with Covid-19 eating into student populations, that universities, policy makers and social researchers are realising just how important international students really are. Their post-study outcomes, too, matter for both host and sending countries. Too often, international students’ own perspectives have been a black box of unknowns. This webinar paper hopes to change that.

Similarities and differences between notions of ‘public’ in the Chinese and liberal Anglo-American traditions, and the implications for higher education

Lili Yang

Lili compares the state-centred Chinese tradition with the liberal Anglo-American tradition in higher education, which are situated in two very distinctive political cultures. She focuses especially on the contributions made by higher education to the public good, which are understood in very different ways in the UK/United States and in China. The two halves of the comparison have points in common but divergent political and social imaginaries, approaches to individualism and collectivism, and ideas of the ‘public’ and of the role of government in education. The paper focuses especially on what the two traditions say about ‘equity’ in higher education, where they have different strengths. Lili will ask the question ‘do East and West have something to learn from each other?’ is there potential for greater commonality, synergy and complementarity in the approaches taken by each of China and the Anglo-American world? Can they blend the best things in each higher education system?


About The Speakers

Thomas Brotherhood is a PhD researcher on CGHE’s global higher education engagement programme.

Lili Yang is a PhD researcher on CGHE’s global higher education engagement programme.


This event is part of the CGHE annual conference webinar series.