education diplomacy

The passage of the Nalanda University Bill by Parliament is a firm indication that India is moving in the direction of unleashing its soft power on Asia and the world. This is reinforced by the efficient completion of the South Asian University project under SAARC and India's decision to open up its higher education sector to global inputs and competition.

Tsinghua University, one of China’s top universities, said on Monday it will increase its number of foreign graduate students as Beijing steps up use of education and other “soft power” initiatives to promote its image abroad.

...why are fewer students choosing to take French? And no offence to the likes of Charles De Gaulle, Asterix and the Michelin Man, but does it really matter?...The sudden decline in French-speaking could mark the end of a long-held attachment the British have felt to the language.

Beijing Foreign Studies University recently announced that it has established a Public Diplomacy Research Center during a press conference in Beijing on Aug. 26. This is China's first institution to specialize in public diplomacy research and its establishment will promote China's public diplomacy research to provide intellectual support for the practice of the government's public diplomacy and a platform for the public to participate in public diplomacy.

A small storefront leads to an English-language school run by Disney...Most students seem happy and engaged. As they ask each other questions, their English sounds no less articulate than that of similarly-aged Americans. Thousands of Chinese children have signed up for Disney’s schools since the first one was opened in October 2008.

Taiwan's legislature approved a bill Thursday to allow Chinese students to study at local universities, dismantling another barrier in a bid to further ease hostilities between the once-bitter rivals. The bill, to take effect in early 2011, will allow local colleges to admit up to 2,000 mainland students a year to enrol in all areas except military, police and security-related studies.

Harvard University has ditched its investments in Israeli companies, raising red flags among Israel supporters. Was this political? With no comment from the university, the blogosphere is alight with speculation.

In fast-growing economies such as China and India, wealthy families can now afford to send their offspring to university but world-class institutions are too few. Whether students cannot find what they want at home or prefer what they see abroad, they are becoming more mobile.