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Developing Intercultural Competencies in International Higher Education Communities: Initiating European Conversations

Date(s) Tuesday 22 September 2009
Venue Graduate School of Education, University of Bristol
4th Floor, Graduate School of Education
University of Bristol
35 Berkeley Square
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Organised by ESCalate
In partnership with BAICE/University of Bristol combined logo

Cultural capability – the ability to function effectively in an international and intercultural context - is crucial in the interconnected world of the 21st century. Universities offer an excellent environment for the development of such cultural capability but consideration needs to be given to how it can be embedded into the formal and informal learning opportunities of higher education.

As higher education institutions, departments and academics in the UK continue to address the various complexities of internationalisation, there is much to be gained from talking to mainland European colleagues who face similar challenges. Our speakers, Hanneke Teekens, Dr Matthias Otten and Professor Martin Haigh, have written and researched extensively in the fields of Internationalisation at home (IaH), developing intercultural competencies in higher education and internationalising the curriculum.

Speaker Biographies

Hanneke Teekens is on the Board of Directors of Nuffic (the Netherlands Organisation for International Cooperation in Higher Education), based in The Hague. She holds responsibility for the Communication Directorate, which includes the NESO (Netherlands Education Support Offices), a programme promoting activities in 10 Nuffic offices abroad. She is director of the National Structure for Erasmus Mundus in Holland and is the previous director of the National Agency Socrates. She is chair and executive director of ASIE (Association for Studies in International Education), a consortium of thirteen organizations whose mission is to encourage international education.

Before joining Nuffic she worked at the Hogeschool, University of Amsterdam and Twente University. She held various positions in international education and has worked in different parts of the world. She is a frequent speaker at international conferences and seminars and has published on many aspects of the internationalisation of higher education. From 1998-2005 she was course leader of the international courses for the European Association for International Education (EAIE).

Dr Matthias Otten is a Professor for Political Science and Intercultural Development at the Applied University of Cologne in Germany. His teaching and research interests include intercultural communication theory, the development of intercultural competence, internationalisation of higher education institutions and migration research. Matthias was founding member of the special interest group “Internationalisation at Home” in EAIE (European Association for International Education) and guest lecturer at Malmö University in Sweden. He has edited several thematic issues about intercultural education and internationalisation in academic journals (Journal of Studies in International Education; Intercultural Education; Forum Qualitative Social Research).

Professor Martin Haigh is Professor of Geography and University Teaching Fellow at Oxford Brookes University, England. Formerly, he taught at the Universities of Chicago, Oklahoma, and Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi. He is presently editor of the Journal of Geography in Higher Education and recently became the 20th appointed Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy in the United Kingdom. Professor Haigh’s work focuses on education for a sustainable future and for planetary citizenship. He leads national and international reclamation and conservation projects.