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Educating China on the move : a typology of contemporary Chinese higher education mobilities.

Xu, Cora and Montgomery, Catherine (2019) 'Educating China on the move : a typology of contemporary Chinese higher education mobilities.', Review of education., 7 (3). pp. 598-627.


The landscape of global higher education is changing rapidly in response to and alongside the geopolitical and geosocial global transformations and China and East Asia are becoming key players in higher education. As China’s economic power and strategic reach grows against a context of global uncertainty, it has become increasingly important to develop a nuanced understanding of Chinese globalisation, not least for its significance to the balance of power relations within and beyond Asia. Higher education provides a powerful lens through which to see how China is globalising and how this might impact on the world. This is manifested in its many established and newer forms of education mobilities. Recognising the lack of research efforts to systematically understand the complexities of contemporary higher education mobilities across China, this paper proposes a typology through a thematic narrative review of more than 250 peer-reviewed journal articles, government and media documents. This typology of Chinese educational mobilities reveals three key insights, including 1) a critique on the ‘mobility imperative’ and the role of the Chinese state, 2) a call for more longitudinal and/or retrospective research to facilitate a relational understanding of the fluid nature of higher education mobilities in China, and 3) a note on the urgency of developing a comprehensive theoretical and conceptual tool kit. This article contributes to an updated understanding of the fluid, multiple and multi-directional nature of contemporary higher education mobilities of China.

Item Type:Article
Full text:(AM) Accepted Manuscript
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Publisher statement:This is the accepted version of the following article: Xu, Cora & Montgomery, Catherine (2019). Educating China on the Move: A Typology of Contemporary Chinese Higher Education Mobilities. Review of Education 7(3): 598-627 which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.
Date accepted:30 July 2018
Date deposited:12 September 2019
Date of first online publication:09 October 2018
Date first made open access:09 April 2020

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