Skip to content

Department of Education

Viewing archives for Centre for Global Higher Education (CGHE)

Claire is passionate about breaking down the historical and spatial boundaries between higher education institutions and the communities excluded from these establishments.  She is a Talloires Network Next Generation Leader and hopes to orientate her research and practice towards the construction of a more just education system in South Africa.

Claire holds a MSt in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, and MPhil in Economics. She previously worked at the Rhodes University Community Engagement Division, responsible facilitating an engaged research group and a community engagement short course for high schools. Her research interests include community/public engagement, African higher education, feminist and engaged research methods, and community histories.

Claire is eager to hear from anyone thinking about pursuing doctoral study in education, and especially from those with similar research interests.


Dr David Mills and Dr Aliya Khalid

Warda Arif is a doctoral student at the Department of Education. Her research aims to operationalise Critical Realist conceptions and methods to study Cultures of Higher Education in select Indian universities.

She completed her Master’s in Education and International Development from University College London’s – Institute of Education (UCL-IOE) as a Commonwealth Scholar and holds a B.Sc. in Biochemistry form Aligarh Muslim University (AMU).

Over her brief career, Warda has worked in the social development and impact sector in South Africa, India and Saudi Arabia, in teaching, research and advisory roles.


Dr Steven Puttick and Dr Aliya Khalid

The Centre for Global Higher Education (CGHE) is delighted to announce that the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) has awarded the centre legacy status for five years from May 2024. This confirms the ongoing excellence and credibility of CGHE’s work. The funding will help maximise the impact and use of CGHE’s existing research as well as open up new opportunities.

David Mills, who will be taking up the CGHE directorship in May, said: “Under Simon Marginson’s leadership, CGHE has established itself as a key space for global higher education research. With legacy centre funding, CGHE’s future is assured, and I look forward to working with all the CGHE team to build on his achievements.”

The University of Birmingham and University of Johannesburg will join the CGHE partnership, strengthening CGHE’s policy expertise. They will be represented by Chris Millward and Thandi Lewin respectively, both of whom have extensive civil service experience. CGHE research leader Ka Ho Mok, who joins Hong Kong’s Hang Seng University in June 2024, will also become part of the executive group, alongside Jan McArthur from Lancaster University. Claire Callender from University College London continues as CGHE Deputy Director, along with Alis Oancea from University of Oxford.

CGHE has held over 400 webinars and events throughout the last nine years, and its 30 researchers have published more than 1000 different outputs. The transcripts, slides and recordings of all past events are available on the CGHE website, along with more than 100 working papers and policy briefings.

The Centre nurtures a global community of higher and tertiary education researchers. Key to this are its research webinars, which will continue on Tuesdays at 2-3pm (UK time) from May. Students, researchers, practitioners, and policymakers are always welcome to register, contribute and participate.

To find out more about CGHE’s plans, visit the website.

The ESRC is the UK’s largest funder of economic, social, behavioural, and human data science. The ESRC legacy centre status review is carried out to establish the ongoing excellence and credibility of a former ESRC centre, and to assess potential for continued recognition as an ESRC centre for a further 5-year period. The extended period of recognition is intended to maximise the impact of the research activity and ESRC investment to date and support the centre through recognition of excellence to ensure the influence and use of its research.

The Centre for Global Higher Education is planning its future as a hub for research into higher education across the globe. We would like to get your feedback on how we communicate and what we can do better. Please take a minute to answer this survey.

The ESRC Centre for Global Higher Education will hold a dynamic and path-breaking conference showcasing insights from its inter-disciplinary research project 8: ‘Local and Global Public Good of Higher Education, a 10-nation study’, on Wednesday 27 March from 9am-5.45pm in UCL Institute of Education, London.

Researchers will discuss the public good role of universities in today’s policy context, in which higher education is often understood solely in terms of narrowly defined economic benefits of higher education, and the contribution of higher education to community and society building, and global good, must be brought back into the picture. Researchers will present findings from CGHE’s 10-nation study on how policymakers and university staff see the contribution of universities to public good, common good and global common good, not only in terms of economic benefits but broader societal well-being. Different countries handle these issues in varying ways and we have much to learn from each other.

The conference will involve a stimulating mix of panels integrating policy, university leadership and pedagogical perspectives, from both the UK and globally. There will be ample opportunity for audience participation via world cafe style breakout groups and parallel online forums.

This will be an important opportunity for thoughtful scholarly engagement on the theme of public/common good, as well as for a fresh discussion on policies to promote the public good role of universities – for graduates, the nation and for all of humanity.

For conference programme and registration, click here.




Yunfei Ma is a doctoral student in the Department of Education conducting research in the field of international higher education.

Following his B.A. (First Class) at the University of Durham, Yunfei was awarded with MSc (Distinction) from the Department of Education, University of Oxford prior to his DPhil studies. He has also worked as a research assistant on the project Transnational academic mobility to global south: an exploratory study of international faculty in China.

Yunfei’s DPhil research focuses on global academic publishing and its relationship with knowledge formation, codification and dissemination. His research interest primarily lies in the geo-politics of knowledge production, global epistemic governance, China’s Humanities and Social Sciences research, and the philosophy of power.


Ariel Lindorff and Xin Xu

Robin’s research is broadly concerned with the lived, experiences and identities of genderqueer+ youth in the Czech Republic. In his research, he aims not only to understand genderqueer+ youth’s experiences, but he strives to feed into ongoing Czech trans and genderqueer+ activism and advocacy through collaboration with local youth activist collectives.

As the queerness of Robin’s research reflects his own queerness, he also seeks to queer academia and research by challenging conventional means of doing research and hegemonic forms of knowledge.


David Mills and Velda Elliott

Lingxuan Chen is a Clarendon Scholar and is currently studying for a DPhil in Education at the University of Oxford. Her thesis focuses on the endogenisation of China’s social science research and the underpinning power dynamics. Her doctoral research is fully funded by the Clarendon Fund Scholarship.

Lingxuan is a DPhil student in Department of Education, University of Oxford. She also works as a Research Assistant on the Centre for Global Higher Education ‘Research on Research’ project. She has a strong interest in China’s social science research, global epistemic justice, international relations and politics, and knowledge-power nexus.

Before her DPhil, Lingxuan was awarded with the MSc in Education (Research Design and Methodology) with Distinction from the University of Oxford. The title of her master thesis is: Toward endogenous research methodologies: A mixed methods study of China’s educational leadership research. The thesis explored emergent terrain of, and the power dynamics underpinning, endogenisation in China’s educational leadership research using content analysis and critical discourse analysis. She also holds a BA in Education at Beijing Normal University in China with first-class honour.



Alis Oancea and Xin Xu

Professor Simon Marginson FBA, Director of the Centre for Global Higher Education, has been elected a Fellow of the British Academy.

Professor Marginson’s research is focused primarily on global and international higher education, higher education in East Asia, the public and social contributions of higher education, and higher education and social equality.

Professor Marginson said, ‘I am deeply conscious of the history of the Academy and of its roll-call of Fellows, including some who continue to shape my own intellectual formation. One never feels equal to the company at such times but it is a wonderful opportunity to work collaboratively and inter-culturally to further the many heterogeneous contributions of the arts, humanities and social sciences.’

In total this year, the Academy named 86 new Fellows, including those from the UK.  They join a community of more than 1,600 distinguished peers.