Scottish higher education; international & collaborative

The eight partner organisations in Connected Scotland all recognise that there are further benefits to be realised for the sector from joint working. All partners share the following objectives:

  • to amplify a message in target markets about the quality and scope of the sector’s offering which rests on excellence in teaching, research and knowledge exchange;
  • to enhance the sector’s success through sharing resources and networks, utilising joint outward missions and collaborative responses to inward missions, be this in emerging or more established markets;
  • to develop new collaborative operational strands that can contribute significantly to the growth of the sector’s exports and overall contribution to the Scottish Government’s Export Ambition in the areas of transnational education, collaborative research and knowledge exchange and student recruitment and mobility;
  • to provide enhanced, collaborative support to institutions in strengthening their existing international links and plans; and
  • to facilitate mutually beneficial partnerships with other key Scottish sectors and organisations in developing international links.

Our approach

With an ambitious goal of growing the sector’s export income from £1.3 billion to £2 billion in 2017, Connected Scotland will need to identify and pursue opportunities that can be better reached as a result of a collaborative approach.

To do this we need to:

  • Provide an evidence base on emerging markets of opportunity for a Connected Scotland approach;
  • Create a Connected Scotland mentality across partners and institutions;
  • Develop and nurture the international community through missions, training and development and through the sharing of market insight and intelligence;
  • Provide a support infrastructure which welcomes new ideas and can facilitate projects of scale and collaborative ventures that may be too large for single institutions;
  • Ensure we focus on the key areas of ‘ambition’ and review progress against these objectives.

The partners will agree three-year rolling work plans. The initial plan for 2014-2017 includes:

  • The development of sustained market engagement through a programme of tailored outward missions developing sustainable international partnerships and increasing Scotland’s international footprint in higher education. Brazil, China, Malaysia and Colombia or Mexico have been identified as destinations for the first round of missions.
  • A smarter use of inward missions in our strategic market engagement activity and the use of other key industry and cultural links;
  • The production and promotion of materials that support the sector in raising awareness of the quality and breadth of offering of Scottish institutions’ teaching, research and knowledge exchange work. This will include the Study in Scotland website and associated materials.