Beyond Internationalization

Lessons from Post-Development


  • Kumari Beck



internationalization of higher education, international education, post-development, critical internationalization studies, new commons


Despite the critiques generated in critical internationalization studies in response to the neoliberal and neocolonial orientation of internationalization of higher education, the direction of internationalization appears to be unchanged. This paper takes up the challenge of imagining internationalization otherwise by drawing from the field of post-development (PD) studies, which, it is argued, has parallels to the realities and debates on internationalization. An overview of the debates in PD and why they offer important ideas for critical internationalization studies will be followed by a discussion of how key analyses and arguments in PD can be applied to internationalization. This argument leads to the question of whether it is time to recognize an emerging post-internationalization movement, acknowledging that internationalization as we know it is in decline. 


Download data is not yet available.

Author Biography

Kumari Beck

KUMARI BECK, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University, Canada. Her major research interests lie in the area of international education, critical internationalization studies, internationalization of curriculum and equity issues in education. Email:


Altbach, P. G., & De Wit, H. (2018). The challenge to higher education

internationalisation. University World News, 23, 494.

Andreotti, V. (2013). Hospicing Western modernity in global citizenship education

[Keynote address]. Decolonizing Global Education International Conference. University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada, CGCER.

Andreotti, V., Stein, S., Pashby, K., & Nicolson , M. (2016). Social cartographies as

performative devices in research on higher education, Higher Education Research & Development. 35(1) 84–99.

Battiste, M. (2004). Animating sites of postcolonial education: Indigenous

Knowledge and the humanities. Plenary address at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, Winnipeg, MB, 29




Beck, K. (2007). Understanding internationalization: The view from the ground

[Paper presentation]. Annual conference of CIESC/CSSE, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.

Beck, K. (2009). Breaking bounds: Nation, place and space in the

internationalization of higher education [Paper presentation]. The annual conference of the Canadian Society for Studies in Higher Education. Ottawa, ON, Canada.

Beck, K. (2011). Exploration and exploitation, encounters and enculturation:

Curriculum in/for the contact zone [Paper presentation]. Annual conference of the Canadian Association for Curriculum Studies (CACS), University of New Brunswick, Frederickton, NB, Canada.

Berthoud, G. (2010). Market. in (Sachs,W, Ed). The development dictionary: A

guide to power and knowledge. Zed Books.

Brandenburg, U., & De Wit, H. (2011). The end of internationalization. International

Higher Education, (62).

Brandenburg, U., de Wit, H., Jones, E., & Leask, B. (2019). Internationalisation in higher education for society. University World News. 20. Retrieved from

CAUT. (2015). Education review: Trends in university finances in the new

millennium 2000/01–2012/13.

Corbridge, S. (1998). ‘Beneath the pavement only soil’: The poverty of post‐

development. The Journal of Development Studies. 34(6), 138–148.

Crawley, M. (2017, July). Universities growing more reliant on foreign student fees.

CBC News.

Darder, A. (2016). Critical leadership for social justice: Unveiling the dirty little

secret of power and privilege. The Radical Imagine-Nation: The Journal of

Public Pedagogy. 1(1), 41–73.

de Wit, H. (2002). Internationalization of higher education in the United States of

America and Europe: A historical, comparative, and conceptual analysis.

Greenwood Press.

de Wit, H. (2016). Misconceptions about (the end of) internationalisation. In

Global and Local Internationalization. Brill| Sense.

de Wit, H., & Hunter, F. (2015). The future of internationalization of higher

education in Europe. International Higher Education. 83, 2–3.

Demaria, F., & Kothari, A. (2017). The post-development dictionary agenda: Paths

to the pluriverse. Third World Quarterly, 38(12), 2588–2599.

Dixon, M. (2006). Globalisation and international higher education: Contested

positionings. Journal of Studies in International Education 10(4), 319–333.

Dolby, N., & Rahman, A. (2008). Research in international education. Review of

Educational Research. 78(3). 676–726.

EduCanada. (2020). The faculty mobility program has a new name!

Escobar, A. (1995). Encountering development: The making and unmaking of the

third world. Princeton University Press. Princeton. New Jersey.

Escobar, A. (2007). Post-development as concept and social practice. In A. Ziai

(Ed), Exploring post-development: Theory and practice, problems and perspectives (pp.18–31). London: Routledge.

Escobar, A. (2015) Degrowth, postdevelopment, and transitions: A preliminary

conversation. Sustain Sci 10, 451–462.

Esteva, G. (1992). Development. in (Sachs,W, Ed). The development dictionary: A

guide to power and knowledge. London: Zed Books.

Esteva, G. (2014). Commoning in the new society. Community Development

Journal, 49(suppl 1), i144–i159.

Esteva, G., Babones, S., & Babcicky, P. (2013). The future of development: A radical

manifesto. Policy Press.

Esteva, G., & Escobar, A. (2017) Post-Development @ 25: on ‘being stuck’ and

moving forward, sideways, backward and otherwise. Third World Quarterly. 38(12) 2559–2572.

Esteva, G., & Prakash, M. S. (1998). Grassroots post-modernism: Remaking the soil

of cultures. Zed Books.

Esteva, G., & Prakash, M. S. (2014). Grassroots post-modernism: Remaking the soil

of cultures. 2nd Edition. Zed Books.

Gesturing Towards Decolonial Futures Collective. (2020). Preparing for the end of

the world as we know it.

Gudynas, E. (2011). Buen Vivir: Today's tomorrow. Development, 54(4), 441–447.

Hudzic, J. K. (2011). Comprehensive Internationalization: From Concept to

Action. Washington, DC: Association of International Educators (NAFSA).

Hunter, F. (2016, July 26–29). Rethinking Internationalization [Keynote presentation at the conference]. Internationalizing Higher Education: Past Practices and Future Possibilities, Vancouver.

Khoo, S. (2011). Ethical globalisation or privileged internationalisation? Exploring

global citizenship and internationalisation in Irish and Canadian universities. Globalisation, Societies and Education, 9(3–4). 337–353.

Kiely, R. (1999). The last refuge of the noble savage? A critical assessment of post-

development theory. European Journal of Development Research 11(1), 30–55.

Knight, J. (2004). Internationalization remodeled: Definition, approaches,

and rationales. Journal of Studies in International Education 8(1) 5–31.

Knight, J. (2014). Is internationalisation of higher education having an identity

crisis? In Maldonado-Maldonado A., Bassett R. (Eds), The forefront of

international higher education. Springer

Latouche, S. (1993) In the Wake of the Affluent Society: Explorations in

Post-development. Zed Books.

Loomba, A. (1998). Colonialism - Postcolonialism. London: Routledge.

Luke, A. (2010). Educating the Other: Standpoint and theory in the

‘Internationalization’ of higher education. In E. Unterhalter & V. Carpentier (Eds.), Global inequalities and higher education: Whose interests are we serving? (pp. 43–65). Palgrave Macmillan.

Maidstone, P. (2000). Internationalization: Part of the problem? Learning Quarterly,

(1), 22–30.

Marginson, S. (2006). Dynamics of national and global competition in higher

education. Higher Education: The International Journal of Higher

Education and Educational Planning 52 (1), 1-39

Mestenhauser, J. (1998). Introduction. In J. Mestenhauser & B. Ellingboe (Eds.),

Reforming the higher education curriculum: Internationalizing the campus.

(pp. xi–xxvii). Oryx Press.

Ninnes, P., & Hellstén. M.(Eds)(2005). Internationalizing higher education: Critical

explorations of pedagogy and policy. Springer

OECD (2020), Education at a Glance 2020: OECD Indicators, OECD Publishing,


Pieterse, J. N. (1998). My paradigm or yours? Alternative development, post‐

development, reflexive development. Development and Change. 29(2), 343–373.

Rahnema, M. (1997). Towards post-development: Searching for signposts, a new

language and new paradigms. In M. Rahnema & V. Bawtree (Eds.), The

post-development reader (pp. 377–403). Zed Books.

Rahnema, M., & Bawtree, V. (1997). The post-development reader. Zed Books.

Rist, G. (1997). The history of development: From western origins to global faith. Zed Books.

Rist, G. (2008). The history of development: From western origins to global faith. 3rd

Edition. Zed Books.

Sachs, W. (1992). The development dictionary: A guide to power as knowledge. Zed Books.

Sachs, W. (2010). The development dictionary: A guide to knowledge as power. 2nd Edition. Zed Books.

Schendel, R., & McCowan, T. (2015). Higher education and development: Critical issues and debates. In T. McCowan & E. Unterhalter (Eds.), Education and international development: An introduction. Bloomsbury.

Shahjahan, R. A., Blanco Ramirez, G., & Andreotti, V. D. O. (2017). Attempting to

imagine the unimaginable: A decolonial reading of global university rankings. Comparative Education Review, 61(S1), S51–S73.

Shiva, V. (1992). Resources. In W. Sachs (Ed.), The development dictionary: A guide

to knowledge as power (pp 206–218). Zed Books.

Shiva, V. (2016). Staying alive: Women, ecology, and development (reprint edition).

North Atlantic Books.

Stein, S. (2019). Critical internationalization studies at an impasse: Making space

for complexity, uncertainty, and complicity in a time of global challenges. Studies in Higher Education.

Stein, S., Andreotti, V., Bruce, J., & Suša, R. (2016). Towards different conversations

about the internationalization of higher education. Comparative and

International Education. 45(1).

Stein, S., Andreotti, V., & Suša, R. (2019). Pluralizing frameworks for global ethics

in the internationalization of higher education in Canada. Canadian Journal

of Higher Education. 49(1), 22–46.

Stier, J. (2004). Taking a critical stance toward internationalization ideologies in

higher education: Idealism, instrumentalism and educationalism. Globalisation, Societies and Education. 2(1). 1–28.

Stier, J. (2010). International education: Trends, ideologies and alternative

pedagogical approaches. Globalisation, Societies and Education, 8(3), 339–

Storey, A. (2000). Post-development theory: Romanticism and pontius pilate

politics. Development. 43(4), 40–46.

Thirumalai, M. S. (2003). Lord Macaulay, the man who started it all and his minute. i

Thomson, B. (2011). Pachakuti: Indigenous perspectives, buen vivir, sumaq kawsay

and degrowth. Development. 54(4), 448–454.

Unterhalter, E., & Carpentier, V. (Eds.). (2010). Global inequalities and higher

education: Whose interests are we serving? Palgrave Macmillan.

Wall, D. (2014). The commons in history: culture, conflict, and ecology. MIT Press.

Willinsky, J. (1998). Learning to divide the world: Education at empire's end.

University of Minnesota Press.

Ziai, A. (2007). Exploring post-development: Theory and practice, problems and

perspectives. Routledge.

Ziai, A. (2016). Post-development and alternatives to development. In Paul Haslam,

Jessica Schafer, and Pierre Beaudet (eds) Introduction to International

Development: Approaches, Actors, and Issues, pp. 65-83. OUP.

Ziai, A. (2017). Post-development 25 years after the development dictionary. Third

World Quarterly: Special Issue: The Development Dictionary @25: Post-

Development and its Consequences. 38(12), 2547-2558




How to Cite

Beck, K. (2021). Beyond Internationalization: Lessons from Post-Development. Journal of International Students, 11(S1), 133–151.