Globalization in LIS Education: Perspectives From iSchools in South Korea and the Philippines

Globalization in LIS Education: Perspectives From iSchools in South Korea and the Philippines

Reysa Alenzuela (The University of the South Pacific Emalus Campus, Vanuatu) and Heesop Kim (Kyungpook National University, South Korea)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-2273-8.ch008


Globalization can be seen to impact Library and Information Science (LIS) education as global processes and practices influence policies and structures, pedagogy, faculty, research, and collaboration. Globalization and internationalization are employed interchangeably in much professional literature, but the latter is a more prominent concept in LIS education. Internationalization in LIS has been discussed in Europe and the US in light of its impact on learning, academic mobility, research collaboration, and international partnerships. This chapter focuses on iSchools being in the frontier of internationalization in addressing the need in higher education to reach across national borders, specifically in South Korea and the Philippines. The discussion focuses on the development shown by two countries in integrating international and global dimensions into the curriculum, faculty composition, research, student support, and global linkages/partnership.
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Globalization is generically described as “the process by which particular goods and services, or social and cultural influences, gradually become similar in all parts of the world” (Cambridge Dictionary, 2019). The process of globalization is not a new phenomenon (Knight, 2005) and it has drastically accelerated in the past several decades due to technological advancement (Maringe and Foskett, 2013). It is thought-provoking that in professional literature, globalization and internationalization are employed interchangeably, though some discrepancy lines should be drawn between them (Pipia, 2017). Internationalization correlates with ‘globalization’ that “in the active sense internationalization refers to the action of rendering something (more) international, for example by adding to its elements from other countries or extending its scope to multiple countries” (Lor, 2019, p.7). According to American Council on Education (ACE) (2012), comprehensive internationalization is an “institutional effort to integrate an international, global, and/or intercultural dimension into the teaching, research, or service functions of higher education.” The concept in Library and Information Science education can also apply ACE’s comprehensive internationalization model.

The concept of globalization has highlighted the cultural, political-economic, and/or technological areas of these processes, with different researchers emphasizing and framing the relationships among these different aspects in diverse ways in their theories (Jackson, 2016). Emerging regionalization, partnerships and networks among countries has brought the need for education to follow. Figure 1 illustrates various partnerships such as energy and environment, technology, political, economic, trade, security, etc. engaged by South Korea and the Philippines where both countries have international commitments. From multilateral agreements, there is the ASEAN Qualifications Framework (AQF) and Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA), ASEAN Plus, ASEAN- European Union FTA, ASEAN- Korea FTA, ASEAN- China FTA, ASEAN-India FTA and ASEAN- Japan FTA. On bilateral agreements, both countries are part of the European Union Cooperative Partnership Agreement (European Commission, 2015; European Council of the European Union, 2013). Emerging regionalism brought issues in all areas including education on the international spectrum.

Figure 1.

Emerging regionalization, partnerships, and networks

Source: cogitAsia CSIS Asia Policy, 2019

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) developed four scenarios with an emphasis on their international aspects on the future of higher education, which were (1) open networking – the key driver of change is the further harmonization of higher education system, leading to an increased trust and understanding as a basis for easy recognition of degree, (2) serving local communities – this scenario is driven by a backlash against globalization and by growing skepticism to internationalization, (3) new public management – the main driving force in this case is the mounting budget pressures created by the aging society that have pushed in most countries to cost shifting and sharing, and (4) higher education Inc. – this scenario is strongly driven by trade liberalization in education (OECD, 2006; Wende, 2007). For the issues related to the globalization and higher education in South Korea, Kim (2011) offers a critical review in the context of economic globalization and examines higher education policy and practice towards internationalization since 1998 to 2007.

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