Facilitating Cross-Cultural Communication: A Global Dimension to Fostering International Talents and Innovation in University Foreign Affairs Management

Facilitating Cross-Cultural Communication: A Global Dimension to Fostering International Talents and Innovation in University Foreign Affairs Management

Mei Li (Northeastern University, China & Aalborg University, Denmark) and Zhiliang Zhu (Northeastern University, China)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9961-6.ch009

Abstract

The purpose of this chapter is twofold: 1) to make a brief interpretation of global dimension mainly focusing on the criterion for “international talents” and the requirements for the internationalization of higher education and 2) to address foreign affairs management in universities plays a vital role in promoting the internationalization of teaching, research, and administrative management, which can be regarded as a key diver to develop global dimension of innovation in higher education. Accordingly, this chapter proposes potential strategies for innovation of the foreign affairs management in universities, which has important significances in studies on internationalization of higher education, cross-culture communication, and foreign affairs management.
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Introduction

Current, although a lot of attention has been paid to a global dimension of higher education development that has achieved fruitful achievements. In 2002, De Wit (2002) stated that “as the international dimension of higher education gains more attention and recognition, people tend to use it in the way that best suits their purpose.” (pp.114) This is even more the case now in view of this further proliferation of activities and terms. “Internationalization is changing the world of higher education, and globalization is changing the world of internationalization,” remarks Jane Knight (2004). “Internationalization is a term that is being used more and more to discuss the international dimension of higher education and, more widely, postsecondary education. It is a term that means different things to different people and is thus used in a variety of ways. Although it is encouraging to see the increased use and attention being given to internationalization, there is a great deal of confusion about what it means.” (pp.5) Therefore, some more efforts are still required to response questions such as: how to understand the role of universities in developing a global community in higher education? How to define “international talents” and what does “internalization” mean to universities? And, how can we understand foreign affairs management as a key driver to facilitate cross-culture communication and develop internationalization in higher education? All of the above questions are required to be deeper explored as a framework that indicates the importance of reform and innovation in foreign affairs management in universities.

Following above lines, this chapter will explore a discussion step by step and try to bridge significant relevance between a comprehensive understanding on developing a global community in higher education and the roles of innovation in foreign affairs management in universities. Thus, this will fill in a knowledge gap as indicated by questions proposed in above. Furthermore, this chapter will be structured into the following parts. Firstly, to discuss briefly on the challenges faced by universities under a background of globalization and internalization. Secondly, to make a deeper exploration on global dimension of universities from a new angle by interpretation of the word “globalization”. At last, to focus on an analysis on innovation in foreign affairs management that contributes to strategies for better developing international universities in the future.

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