Projects, Processes, Politics
Edited by Susan L. Robertson, Kris Olds, Roger Dale and Que Anh Dang
Chapter 6: Changing higher education discourse in the making of the ASEAN region
Although the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was officially established in 1967, its regional integration initiatives only started to take off in the early 1990s. In this chapter I will argue that how ASEAN perceives, utilizes and engages higher education in its regionalization processes, including ASEAN’s higher education discourses, is influenced by historical regional development, power asymmetries and policy dynamics within the diversity of its member nation-states. ASEAN higher education discourses, however, are also located within parallel processes of globalization and regionalization. Global regionalisms are influencing the nature, scope, direction and pace of key public policies, such as higher education. As the most advanced regionalism project to date, the European project’s influence is particularly prominent in shaping other emergent regions, including the Southeast Asian regional integration project, and the regionalization of higher education. Key aspects of the Bologna Process, and the various initiatives leading to the establishment of the European Higher Education Area, can be seen across a range of regional projects that are currently under way. This influence has been advanced by Europe and other nations through funding of projects via organizations, such as the ASEAN University Network (AUN), and the South-East Asian Ministers of Education Organization – Regional Centre for Higher Education and Development (SEAMEO RIHED).
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