Trend analysis and strategic relationship building

During recent years, the internationalisation of higher education and research has moved from being reactive to becoming proactive and strategic, and internationalisation has evolved from presenting added value to becoming a natural part of the operations of many higher education institutions. Competitiveness is increasing globally, as is the commercialisation of higher education. There are more extensive academic activity across national borders, while syllabi and teaching are simultaneously being internationalised and becoming as important as the traditional focus on mobility.

Emerging countries are investing in education, research and innovation to refine and diversify their economies, which means that the playing field has been levelled and there are more equal players. Several of these emerging countries in the sciences also differ in many respects from the countries that had traditionally led the field. These factors create many new opportunities, but also challenges that require greater skills and expertise in the development of relevant, competitive internationalisation strategies for both higher education institutions and research funders.

Building a knowledge and skills base in the area of internationalisation is therefore a central part of our mandate. We aim to be a national knowledge resource on internationalisation for higher education institutions and other relevant actors. We also conduct trend analysis and build strategic relationships. In our trend analysis work, we collaborate closely with other relevant actors in Sweden and internationally, as well as with international experts, research groups and think tanks. We publish reports and articles, and organise seminars and delegation visits. Our staff and presence in China give us a unique understanding of and expertise in the area of Chinese higher education and research.



Increased collaboration with Japan

Research partnerships between Sweden and Japan have grown by over 400% during the last 20 years, and are of a higher quality than the averages of both countries. Our new report describes academic partnerships between these countries. While the focus is on research partnerships, the report also touches on student mobility.

Country Reports


S. Schwaag Serger and T. Shih, “China’s growing innovation capabilities – a concern or an opportunity?,” Policy Forum, 20 February 2019.

H. Pohl and J. E. Lane, “Research contributions of international branch campuses to the scientific wealth of academically developing countries,” Scientometrics, vol. 116, no. 3, pp. 1719-34, September 2018.

A. Göthenberg, “Sverige behöver fler insatser för att hänga med internationellt,” Universitetsläraren, 6 February 2018.

S. Schwaag Serger, ”Det nya Kina försvinner inte för att vi blundar,” Svenska Dagbladet, 29 December 2017.

S. Schwaag Serger, “Vad händer efter biståndet?,” Svenska Dagbladet, 23 June 2017.

J. E. Lane and H. Pohl, “Is there a benefit to importing a branch campus? Research capacity in Abu Dhabi,” International Higher Education, no. 89, pp. 14-16, 2017.

A. Göthenberg and O. Wästberg, “Universiteten måste klara att bli globala,” Svenska Dagbladet, 22 November 2015.

O. Wästberg, ”Inrätta en snabbfil för utländska forskare,” Expressen, 27 October 2015.

H. Pohl and A. Göthenberg, “Strategic internationalization in Sweden: the cases of Lund University and Blekinge Institute of Technology,” in Comprehensive internationalization: Institutional pathways to success, J. Hudzik, Ed., London, UK, Routledge, 2015, pp. 154-65.

H. Pohl, ”How to measure internationalization of higher education,” in New perspectives on internationalization and competitiveness, E. Ullberg, Ed., Switzerland, Springer International Publishing, 2015, pp. 31-46.

H. Pohl, G. Warnan and J. Baas, “Level the playing field in scientific collaboration with the use of a new indicator: Field-Weighted Internationalization Score,” Research Trends, no. 39, pp. 3-8, 2014.

A. Göthenberg and O. Wästberg, “Svenska lärosäten behöver bli mer internationella,” Universitetsläraren, no. 9, 2014.

H. Pohl and A. Göthenberg, “Strategic internationalisation in Sweden-Activities and rationales,” in Going Global, Global Education: Knowledge-based economies for 21st century nations, vol. 3, M. Stiasny and T. Gore, Eds., UK, British Council, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2014, pp. 169-80.

A. Gothenberg, H. Pohl and N. Adler, “Strategic measures for competitive internationalization of higher education and research,” in OECD Institutional Management of Higher Education (IMHE) General Conference, Paris, France, 2012.

M. Sandström, L.-E. Liljelund, G. Blomqvist, L. Rask, A. Göthenberg, T. Larsson, M. Yagoubi and J. Anderson, “Skapade fria stiftelser av löntagarfonderna,” Dagens Nyheter, 15 October 2011.

G. Melin, R. Danell and O. Persson, “A bibliometric mapping of the scientific landscape on Taiwan,” Issues & Studies, vol. 36, no. 5, pp. 61-82, 1 September 2000.

G. Melin, “Globalisering och internationalisering inom vetenskapen,” Sociologisk Forskning, vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 22-36, 1999.