Important Dates:

Panel submission: June 1, 2021

Notification of results: June 15, 2021

Registration: June 15, 2021


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Keynote Session:

University Dynamism and Euro-Asia Interdependency: Possibilities and Realities


Speakers: Simon Marginson (University of Oxford) and Jinghuan Shi (Tsinghua University)

Chair and Moderator: Gerard Postiglione (The University of Hong Kong)



This session sets the framework for the 2021 annual conference of the Consortium for Higher Education Researchers (CHER; https://cher-highered.org/). The two keynote speakers and the chair will engage in an interactive examination of the major achievements, challenges, issues and possibilities for Euro-Asia academic and educational exchanges, cooperation, and intellectual debate. Universities in Europe and Asia have a greater responsibility than ever to ensure that their institutions of higher education attract the best minds without borders and guarantee the free exchange of ideas to enrich their intellectual vitality to address the global challenges including climate change, health care, and rising inequality. In a global world where competition reigns, the promotion of cultural and social ties and understanding, complementing a need for further intellectual stimulation and collaboration ought to be part of the social mandate of universities in both regions to ensure a peaceful world and the continuation of the promotion of global public goods.


The session will be a keynote interchange between the speakers over several key questions, which will kickstart the discussion:

1. What have been key achievements of Euro-Asian cooperation in higher education?

2. What have been the main challenges and limits of Euro-Asian cooperation? Has one partner benefitted more than the other, or have there been balanced and mutual gains?

3. Has Western influence in East Asian higher education been a positive force in East Asia? How much learning in the reverse direction has there been?

4. What are the key issues facing the future of Euro-Asian cooperation in higher education? What are the best opportunities for future cooperation?

5. Does the university dynamism make a difference in Euro-Asian cooperation in higher education and how to keep and encourage the dynamism?

The audience will be invited to send questions during the event. Each question can be accompanied by a name and affiliation.


The session would take overall 1 hour and 30 minutes. It can start with 10 to 15 minutes bringing up these questions (or others that the keynote conversationalists prefer) and debating them, and after that the conversation continues between the conversationalists, the chair, and the audience.

Simon Marginson (University of Oxford)

Simon Marginson is Professor of Higher Education at the University of Oxford, Director of the ESRC/OFSRE Centre for Global Higher Education (CGHE), Joint Editor-in-Chief of Higher Education, Professorial Associate of the Melbourne Centre for Study of Higher Education at the University of Melbourne, and Lead Researcher with Higher School of Economics in Moscow. He previously worked at Monash and the University of Melbourne in Australia and UCL in the UK. Simon is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in UK and a member of the board of governors of CHER. His research is focused primarily on global and international higher education, higher education in East Asia, higher education and the common good, higher education and social inequality, and global science, the topic of several recent papers. He is widely published (Google Scholar h-index 74). A recent paper with Lili Yang comparing Chinese and Anglo-American understandings of the public good role of higher education is the subject of a Special Issue discussion in the journal Globalisation, Societies and Education. Recent books include High Participation Systems of Higher Education, edited with Brendan Cantwell and Anna Smolentseva (Oxford University Press, 2018), and Changing Higher Education for a Changing World, edited with Claire Callender and William Locke (Bloomsbury, 2020). Forthcoming are Changing Higher Education in India, edited with Saumen Chattopadhyay and N.V. Varghese (Bloomsbury, December 2021) and Changing Higher Education in East Asia, edited with Xin Xu (Bloomsbury, February 2022).

Jinghuan Shi (Tsinghua University)

Jinghuan Shi is professor of Education at Tsinghua University, Director of the Research Center for the Assessment of College and Student, the Deputy Chair of the Degree Committee at Tsinghua University, the Editor-in-Chief of International Journal of Chinese Education, Deputy Chair of the Special Committee on Institutional Research, and on Higher Education Evaluation under the China Association of Higher Education. She previously worked at Beijing Normal University as professor and the Director of the Institute of Education and Culture, the Deputy Chair of Education Department. Jinghuan She has a broad academic publication in higher education, international and comparative education, She has been a team leader in the national largest student survey project called China College Student Survey (CCSS) for 10 years and is currently working as a PI for a national key research project on the assessment of World-Class University Construction Project.

Gerard Postiglione (The University of Hong Kong)

Gerard A. Postiglione is Honorary Professor and Professor Emeritus in the Faculty of Education of the University of Hong Kong, and Coordinator of the Consortium of Higher Education Research in Asia. Gerard is a Fellow of the American Education Research Association. His scholarship includes 20 books and over 150 articles and chapters. His most recent article (2020) is Expanding higher education: China’s precarious balance, China Quarterly (Cambridge University Oess) and most recent book with Kong and Hannum (2020) Rural Education in China's Social Transition (Routledge Press). His books also include Mass Higher Education in East Asia, Crossing Borders in East Asian Higher Education, and Asian Higher Education. His autobiography was published in Leaders in the Sociology of Education (2016) and his research works were collected and published by Routledge Press (2017). He has been a consultant to the Asian Development Bank, Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development, United Nations Development Programme, World Bank, and foundations, including the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and the Ford Foundation. He wrote on higher education for The New York Times and The Washington Post, and is widely quoted in the English and Chinese press.