Global citizens or global workers? Comparing university programmes for global citizenship education in Japan and the UK
KeywordsGlobal citizenship, higher education, internationalisation, comparative higher education, Japan, UK
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AbstractThe implementation of global citizenship programmes at universities has been taking place against a backdrop of growing internationalisation and marketisation in higher education, leading some to conclude that universities are cultivating global workers rather than global citizens. This small-scale exploratory study aimed to investigate these claims through the comparison of global citizenship education (GCE) programmes in two contrasting contexts – the UK and Japan. Through a combination of quantitative and qualitative content analysis, our findings suggest that the universities in both the UK and Japanese contexts demonstrate examples of adaptation and localisation of GCE to fit with institutional commitments, and both universities have significant elements of employability agendas infused into their programmes. We argue that while different in many respects, the two programmes both demonstrate an adaptation of GCE to fit within broader internationalisation strategies aimed at maximising global competitiveness and an alignment with the neoliberal trends shaping the global higher education sector.