Non-Economic Motivations behind International Student Mobility

An Interdisciplinary Perspective

Authors

  • Shekhar Tokas Dr. B. R. Ambedkar University
  • Anand Sharma O.P. Jindal Global University
  • Ratnam Mishra Delhi Technological University
  • Rohit Yadav SGT University

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v13i2.4577

Keywords:

human capital theory, international student mobility, non-economic motivations, personal capital, social capital

Abstract

International Student Mobility (ISM) has received a lot of attention in the literature on international migration. However, most of the studies assume that investment in skills and knowledge by international students is guided by economic motivations only. Importantly, with an increase in the proportion of international student mobility in total mobility, the students’ motivations have become more complex. Different theoretical approaches across disciplines have been logically extended to study the mobility motivations of international students. Most of the existing approaches do not emphasise the non-economic aspects of motivation and thus, do not provide a holistic understanding of ISM. This paper proposes an augmented human capital framework that incorporates the non-economic motivations of international students through the inclusion of psychic gains and the acquired stocks of personal and social capital.

Author Biographies

Shekhar Tokas, Dr. B. R. Ambedkar University

SHEKHAR TOKAS, PhD, is an Assistant Professor at Dr. B. R. Ambedkar University, Delhi, India. His research and publications have primarily focused on the mobility of international students, human capital, and higher education. Email: eco.shekhar@gmail.com 

Anand Sharma, O.P. Jindal Global University

Dr. Anand Sharma is an Associate Professor of Economics at Jindal Global Business School, O.P. Jindal Global University. He is a Fellow of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad. Prior to his doctoral degree, he completed M.Phil in economics from Jawaharlal Nehru University. Dr. Sharma was associated with IIM Rohtak, IIM Sirmaur and P.G.D.A.V. College (University of Delhi) as an Assistant Professor. He has also worked as an economic expert in the Antitrust Division of Competition Commission of India. His research interests include development economics, health economics, and institutional economics. Email: anandsharma@jgu.edu.in

Ratnam Mishra, Delhi Technological University

Ratnam Mishra is an Assistant Professor of Economics in the University School of Management and Entrepreneurship (USME), Delhi Technological University (DTU). She has a PhD degree from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi, with specialization in Economics of Education, and a Masters in Economics and Rural Development from Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Awadh University, Ayodhya. Her areas of interest are economics of migration, entrepreneurship, vocational education and skill development, and issues in the Indian Economy. Email: ratnam.mishra@dtu.ac.in

Rohit Yadav, SGT University

Dr. Rohit Yadav is an Assistant Professor in Marketing at Faculty of Commerce and Management, SGT University. Dr. Rohit Yadav holds a Ph.D. from Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee (IIT Roorkee). He has published various research papers in ABDC -A, B and C categories with reputed publishers like Emerald, Springer, Sage etc. and presented research papers in National and International conferences. Email: rohit13885@gmail.com

References

Albien, A. J., & Mashatola, N. J. (2021). A systematic review and conceptual model of international student mobility decision-making. Social Inclusion, 9 (1), 288–298. https://doi: 10.17645/si.v9i1.3769 DOI: https://doi.org/10.17645/si.v9i1.3769

Altbach, P., & Knight, J. (2007). The internationalization of higher education: Motivations and realities. Journal of Studies in International Education, 11 (3/4), 290-305. https://doi.org/10.1177/1028315307303542 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1028315307303542

Baláž V., Williams A., & Fifeková E. (2016). Migration decision making as complex choice: Eliciting decision weights under conditions of imperfect and complex information through experimental methods. Population, Space and Place, 22(1), 36–53. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/psp.1858

Bamberger, A. (2020). Accumulating cosmopolitan and ethnic identity capital through international student mobility. Studies in Higher Education,45(7), 1367-1379. https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2019.1597037 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2019.1597037

Becker, G (1975). Human capital: A theoretical and empirical analysis, with special reference to education (2nd ed). National Bureau of Economic Research.

Becker, G. (1993). Nobel lecture: The economic way of looking at behavior. Journal of Political Economy, 101(3), 385-409. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1086/261880

Becker, G. (1994). Human capital: A theoretical and empirical analysis, with special reference to education (3rd ed). The University of Chicago Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226041223.001.0001

Becker, G. (1996). Accounting for tastes. Harvard University Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4159/9780674020658

Becker, G. S., & Murphy, K. M. (2000). Social economics: Market behaviour in a social environment. Harvard University Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4159/9780674020641

Beine, M., Noël, R., & Ragot, L. (2014). Determinants of the international mobility of students. Economics of Education Review, 41(3), 40–54. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.econedurev.2014.03.003 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.econedurev.2014.03.003

Bharte, U. (2014). Formation of student migration preferences: A study in Delhi-NCR region [unpublished PhD thesis]. Jawaharlal Nehru University.

Bircan, T., Purkayastha, D., Ahmad Y., Ahmad, Wali., Lotter, K., Iakono, C., Göler, D., & Stanek, M. (2020, July). Gaps in migration research: Review of migration theories and the quality and compatibility of migration data on the national and international level. Vrije Universiteit Brussel. https://researchportal.vub.be/en/publications/gaps-in-migration-research-review-of-migration-theories-and-the-q.

Birman, D., & Bray, E. (2017). Immigration, migration, and community psychology. In M. A. Bond, I. Serrano-García, C. B. Keys, & M. Shinn (eds.), APA handbook of community psychology: Methods for community research and action for diverse groups and issues (pp. 313–26). American Psychological Association. https://doi.org/10.1037/14954-018 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1037/14954-018

Bourdieu, P. (1986). The forms of capital. In: Richardson, J. (ed.), Handbook of theory and research for the sociology of education (pp. 241-258).Greenwood.

Brooks, R., & Waters, J. (2010). Social networks and educational mobility: The experiences of UK Students, Globalisation, Societies and Education, 8(1), 143-157. https://doi:10.1080/14767720903574132 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/14767720903574132

Brooks, R., & Waters, J. (2011) Student mobilities, migration and the internationalization of higher education. Palgrave Macmillan. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1057/9780230305588

Brunarska Z. (2019), A “good enough” choice: Bounded rationality in migration destination choice. Studia Migracyjne – Przegląd Polonijny, 45(2), 43–62. https://doi.org/10.4467/25444972SMPP.19.014.10840 DOI: https://doi.org/10.4467/25444972SMPP.19.014.10840

Chao, C. N., Hegarty, N., Angelidis, J., & Lu, V. F. (2017). Chinese students’ motivations for studying in the United States. Journal of International Students, 7(2), 257–269. https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v7i2.380 DOI: https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v7i2.380

Chellaraj, G. (2019). The economics of international student and scholar mobility: Directions for research (World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 8848). World Bank. https://openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/31674 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1596/1813-9450-8848

Choudaha, R. (2017). Three waves of international student mobility (1999–2020). Studies in Higher Education, 42, 1-8. https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2017.1293872 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2017.1293872

Clark, W. A., & Lisowski, W. (2017). Prospect theory and the decision to move or stay. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 114(36), E7432-E7440. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1708505114

Czaika, M. (2015). Migration and economic prospects. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 41(1), 58-82. https://doi.org/10.1080/1369183X.2014.924848 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/1369183X.2014.924848

De Haas, H. (2021). A theory of migration: the aspirations-capabilities framework. Comparative Migration Studies, 9(1), 1-35. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40878-020-00210-4 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s40878-020-00210-4

De Jong, G. F., & Fawcett, J. T. (1981). Motivations for migration: An assessment and a value-expectancy research model. In G. E. De Jong & R. W. Gardner (Eds.), Migration decision making: Multidisciplinary approaches to microlevel studies in developed and developing Countries (pp. 186-225). Pergamon Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-08-026305-2.50008-5

De Wit, H. (2020). Internationalization of higher education: The need for a more ethical and qualitative approach. Journal of International Students, 10(1), 1-4. https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v10i1.1893 DOI: https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v10i1.1893

Fawcett, J. T., & De Jong, G.F. (1982). Reasons for moving and migration behaviour. In U.N., ESCAP, National Migration Surveys (pp. 109-131). United Nations.

Findlay, A.M., King, R., Geddes, A., Smith, F., Stam, A., Dunne, M., Skeldon, R., Ahrens, J. (2010). Motivations and experiences of UK students studying abroad (Research Paper No. 8). Department of Business Innovation and Skills. http://www.bis.gov.uk/assets/biscore/corporate/migratedD/publications/B/BISRP-008

Findlay A. M., King R., Smith F. M., Geddes, A., Skeldon, R. (2012). World class? An investigation of globalisation, difference, and international student mobility. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 37(1), 118–131. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-5661.2011.00454.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-5661.2011.00454.x

Findlay, A., McCollum, D., & Packwood. H. (2017). Marketization, marketing and the production of international student migration. International Migration, 55(3), 139–155. https://doi.org/10.1111/imig.12330 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/imig.12330

Gümüş, S., Gök, E., & Esen, M. (2020). A review of research on international student mobility: Science mapping the existing knowledge base. Journal of Studies in International Education, 24(5), 495-517. doi:10.1177/1028315319893651 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1028315319893651

Henrich, J., Heine, S. J., & Norenzayan, A. (2010). The weirdest people in the world? Behavioural and Brain Sciences, 33(2/3), 1-75. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0140525X0999152X DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S0140525X0999152X

Hilger, L., & Downing, C. (2021, March 2). The surprising leaders of international student mobility. European Association for International Education. https://www.eaie.org/blog/surprising-leaders-student-mobility.html

Kahneman, D. (2003). Maps of bounded rationality: Psychology for behavioural economics. American Economic Review, 93 (5), 1449-1475. https://doi.org/10.1257/000282803322655392 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1257/000282803322655392

King, R., Findlay, A., & Ahrens, J. (2010). International student mobility literature review. Report to HEFCE, and co-funded by the British Council. UK: National Agency for Erasmus.

King, R., Lulle, A., Morosanu, L., & Williams, A. (2016). International youth mobility and life transitions in Europe: Questions, definitions, typologies and theoretical approaches (Working Paper No. 86). Sussex Centre for Migration Research.

King, R., & Raghuram, P. (2013). International student migration: Mapping the field and new research agendas. Population, Space and Place, 19 (2), 127-137. https://doi.org/10.1002/psp.1746 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/psp.1746

Klöble, K. (2021). A behavioural perspective on the drivers of migration: Studying economic and social preferences using the Gallup World Poll (Discussion Paper No. 4). German Development Institute.

Lee, E. S. (1966). A theory of migration. Demography, 3(1), 47-57. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2307/2060063

Lewis, W. A. (1954). Economic development with unlimited supplies of labour. The Manchester School of Economic and Social Studies, 22(2), 139-191. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9957.1954.tb00021.x

Lichtenstein, S., & Slovic, P. (Eds.) (2006). The construction of preference. Cambridge University Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511618031

Lo, W. Y. W. (2018): Beyond competition: a comparative review of conceptual approaches to international student mobility. Globalisation, Societies and Education 17(3), 261-273. https://doi.org/10.1080/14767724.2018.1525283 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/14767724.2018.1525283

Madge, C., Raghuram, P., & Noxolo, P. (2015). Conceptualizing international education: From international student to international study. Progress in Human Geography, 39 (6), 1–21. https://doi.org/10.1177/0309132514526442 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0309132514526442

Massey, D. S., Arango, J., Hugo, O., Kouaduci, A., Pellagrino, A., & Taylor, E. (1993).Theories of international migration: A review and appraisal. Population and Development Review, 19(3), 431–466. https://doi.org/10.2307/2938462 DOI: https://doi.org/10.2307/2938462

Moriarty, E., Wickham, J., Daly, S., & Bobek, A. (2015) Graduate emigration from Ireland: Navigating new pathways in familiar places. Irish Journal of Sociology, 23(2), 71–92. DOI: https://doi.org/10.7227/IJS.23.2.6

Mulvey, B. (2021). Conceptualizing the discourse of student mobility between “periphery” and “semi-periphery”: the case of Africa and China. Higher Education, 81(1), 437- 451. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-020-00549-8 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-020-00549-8

Murphy-Lejeune, E. (2002). Student mobility and narrative in Europe: The new strangers. Routledge. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203167038

Nathan, S., & Hoke, D. (2021, Feb 1). Starting A New Era for International Students – An International Perspective. Edu Alliance Group Journal. https://edualliancegroup.blog/2021/02/01/starting-a-new-era-for-international-students-an-international-perspective/

Page, A.G., & Chahboun, S. (2019). Emerging empowerment of international students: How international student literature has shifted to include the students’ voices. Higher Education, 78(5), 871–885. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-019-00375-7 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-019-00375-7

Peters, M. A. (2019). Ancient centers of higher learning: A bias in the comparative history of the university?. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 51(11), 1063-1072. https://doi.org/10.1080/00131857.2018.1553490 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/00131857.2018.1553490

Pinto, M. J. A., Moscardi, E. H., Gomes, E. L., & Nakatani, M. S. M. (2021). The Touristudent: How international academic mobility can contribute to tourism. Journal of International Students, 11(1), 60–80. https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v11i1.1670 DOI: https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v11i1.1670

Project Atlas. (2020). Project Atlas [Dataset]. Institute of International Education.

https://www.iie.org/Research‐and‐Insights/Project‐Atlas

Punteney, K. (2016). International careers: U.S. undergraduates’ motivations and concerns. Journal of International Students, 6(2), 478–500. https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v6i2.367 DOI: https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v6i2.367

Raghuram, P. (2012). Theorising the spaces of student migration. Population, Space and Place, 19(2), 138-154. https://doi.org/10.1002/psp.1747 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/psp.1747

Ravenstein, E. G. (1885). The laws of migration. Journal of the Statistical Society of London, 48(2), 167-235. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2307/2979181

Roy, A., Newman, A., Ellenberger, T., & Pyman, A. (2019). Outcomes of international student mobility programs: A systematic review and agenda for future research. Studies in Higher Education, 44(9), 1630-1644. https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2018.1458222 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2018.1458222

Savani, K., Markus, H. R., & Conner, A. L. (2008). Let your preference be your guide? Preferences and choices are more tightly linked for North Americans than for Indians. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 95(4), 861-876. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0011618 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1037/a0011618

Schwartz, S.J., Walsh, S.D., Ward, C., Tartakovsky, E., Weisskirch, R.S., Vedder, P., Makarova, E., Bardi, A., Birman, D., Oppedal, B., Benish-Weisman, M., Lorenzo-Blanco, E.I., Güngör, D., Stevens, G. W. J. M., Benet-Martínez, V., Titzmann, P.F., Silbereisen, R.K., Geeraert, N., & Psychology of Migration Working Group. (2020). The role of psychologists in international migration research: Complementing other expertise and an interdisciplinary way forward. Migration Studies, 1-18 https://doi.org/10.1093/migration/mnz054 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/migration/mnz054

Simon, H. A. (1972). Theories of bounded rationality. In C. B. McGuire & R. Rander (Ed.), Decision and Organisation (pp.161-176). North-Holland Publishing Company.

Simon, H. A. (1978). Rationality as process and as product of thought. American Economic Review, 68(2), 1-16. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511598951.005 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511598951.005

Simon, H. A. (1986). Rationality in psychology and economics. The Journal of Business, 59(4), 209-224. https://doi.org/10.1086/296363 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1086/296363

Simon H. (2000). Bounded rationality in social science: today and tomorrow. Mind and Society, 1(1), 25–39. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02512227

Sjaastad, L. A. (1962). The costs and returns of human migration. Journal of Political Economy, 70(5), 80-93. https://doi.org/10.1086/258726 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1086/258726

Tan, E. (2014). Human capital theory: A holistic criticism. Review of Educational Research, 84(3), 411-445. https://doi.org/10.3102/0034654314532696 DOI: https://doi.org/10.3102/0034654314532696

Teixeira, P. N. (2014). Gary Becker’s early work on human capital-collaborations and distinctiveness. IZA Journal of Labor Economics, 3(1), 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40172-014-0012-2. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s40172-014-0012-2

Tokas, S. (2017). International students in India: A study of their motivations and mobility experiences [unpublished doctoral dissertation]. Jawaharlal Nehru University.

United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) (2020). International migration 2020 highlights (ST/ESA/SER.A/452).

UNESCO. (2020). UNESCO Institute for Statistics [Dataset]. http://data.uis.unesco.org

Van Mol, C., Caarls, K. & Souto-Otero, M. (2021). International student mobility and labour market outcomes: an investigation of the role of level of study, type of mobility, and international prestige hierarchies. Higher Education, 82(6), 1145–1171. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-020-00532-3 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-020-00532-3

Waters, J., & Brooks, R. (2010). Accidental achievers: International higher education, class reproduction and privilege in the experiences of UK students overseas. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 31(2), 217-228. https://doi: 10.1080/01425690903539164 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/01425690903539164

Wolpert, J. (1964). The decision process in spatial perspective. Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 54(4), 537-558. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8306.1964.tb01783.x

Yang, P. (2022). China in the global field of international student mobility: an analysis of economic, human and symbolic capitals. Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, 52(2), 308-326, https://doi.org/10.1080/03057925.2020.1764334 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/03057925.2020.1764334

Yang, Q., Shen, J., & Xu, Y. (2022). Changes in international student mobility amid the COVID-19 pandemic and response in the China context. Fudan J. Hum. Soc. Sci., 15, 23-40. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40647-021-00333-7 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s40647-021-00333-7

Zhu, H., & Qian, J. (2021). New theoretical dialogues on migration in China: Introduction to the special issue. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 47(12), 2685-2705. https://doi.org/10.1080/1369183X.2020.1739372 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/1369183X.2020.1739372

Downloads

Published

2022-08-30

How to Cite

Tokas, S., Sharma, A., Mishra, R., & Yadav, R. (2022). Non-Economic Motivations behind International Student Mobility: An Interdisciplinary Perspective. Journal of International Students, 13(2), 155–171. https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v13i2.4577

Issue

Section

Research Articles (English)

Categories