Briefings & Evidence

Connecting Scotland – how Scottish organisations engage internationally

The second strand of the European and External Relations Committee (EERC) Inquiry into “Connecting Scotland: how Scotland can engage most effectively in a globalising world” considered how Scottish organisations engage internationally.

Our submission provides an overview of the breadth of activity we are currently engaged in as a sector as well as the reason for those activities as asked by the Committee. We considered three key areas:-

  1. The vast scale of international activity in higher education, which includes – international student recruitment; transnational education (TNE) and overseas campuses; student and staff exchange; international export; attraction of inward investment; research partnerships.
  2. The effectiveness of Scotland’s higher education institutions’ participation in international areas e.g. immigration policy and ensuring Scotland’s ‘product’ remains internationally competitive.
  3. What organisations in Scotland do to be effective internationally, including in-country support; collaboration; long-term investment in international approaches; awareness of global trends.

The scale of international activity in higher education is so vast it is not possible to provide detailed examples for our 19 members within this submission. Instead, we have encouraged institutions to make individual responses to this inquiry.

Universities Scotland’s submission to the committee’s Inquiry can be read here.

The European and External Relations Committee  has carried out various inward and outward visits as part of its “Connecting Scotland” Inquiry. This included a visit  on 30 April by the EERC and representatives from universities across Scotland, to the University of Edinburgh, to give the committee an understanding of how universities operate on international issues. Full details can be found here.