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Universities as Portals of Globalization: Crossroads of Internationalization and Area Studies - A Research Booklet

Claudia Baumann (U Leipzig, Germany), ed.


Publication Date2014
PublicationCAS Working Paper No. 4
PublisherLeipziger Universitätsverlag


Claudia Baumann is currently a PhD student of the DFG Research Training Group (GK 1261) “Critical Junctures of Globalization” at the Centre for Area Studies. The research booklet follows her PhD project, exploring higher education institutions as arenas of global encounters and the associated strategic development of managing the challenges of internationalization in today’s higher education landscape.


The first decade of the 21st century was a tumultuous period in which the challenges of globalization shook higher education to the core. Universities are learning to adapt to their role in the more complex, border-transcending environment.

This booklet seeks to contribute to the next chapter in global higher education research in which universities are approaching internationalization with a new awareness. Rather than viewing it as an arbitrary or expansionary concept based on the belief that “more is better”, universities around the world are strategically forming their own internationalization profiles, each adapting to its particular environment but all reaching for similar goals of rich international profiles.
Area studies are particularly relevant to the process of internationalization at universities. Despite a wealth of knowledge available in the area studies departments of universities, little attention has this far been paid to this expertise while administrators in charge of internationalization have ventured out to exactly these places to open branch campuses or partner up in joint programmes. Recent trends, however, show that a closer cooperation emerges, creating a new imperative for area studies.

Biographical Note
Claudia Baumann graduated from the University of Leipzig with a master of arts in European studies. Claudia Baumann joined the DFG Research Training Group (GK 1261): “Critical Junctures of Globalization” at the Centre for Area Studies as a PhD student in October of 2011 following her tenure at the Global and European Studies Institute as Programme Coordinator for the Erasmus Mundus Global Studies Master of Arts. Prior, she worked as a junior consultant for KPMG in Brussels and Berlin, as well as earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Sunderland (United Kingdom) and the Euro-Business-College in Hamburg (Germany).