Developing tertiary education in Mauritius

Making the country a “knowledge hub”

Mauritius’s Minister of Tertiary Education envisages to transform the small island state into a ‘knowledge hub’, and hopes by doing so to also increase its gross enrolment ratio (GER) from 45% in 2009 to 70% by 2015. The country has already developed collaboration agreements with foreign universities from the Anglophone and Francophone world. And it is expected to attract as many as 100,000 international students by 2020.  In addition to attracting foreign students, the government hopes the increased educational activity will also lead to increased enrolments of nationals in tertiary education within the country.

Within this framework, the Tertiary Education Commission in Mauritius, under the aegis of the Ministry of Tertiary Education, Science, Research and Technology, organized an international conference on Internationalization of Tertiary Education in Port-Louis (Mauritius), from 23 to 25 March 2011. The aim was to bring together an international panel of tertiary education researchers and experts to discuss the impact of globalization on tertiary education.

IIEP’s contribution to the international seminar included a keynote speech on the theme of internationalization of higher education and a plenary speech on higher education in small states and education hubs. These presentations were based on a paper prepared for the conference entitled “Internationalization of higher education and small states”.

The seminar drew more than 150 participants, including academics, administrators and policy-makers in higher education. A majority of the participants were from Mauritius, while a good number were expatriate Mauritians and international participants.

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Photo: Dr. The Hon. Rajeshwar Jeetah, Minister of Tertiary Education, Science, Research and Technology, Mauritius, in conversation withProf. Goolam Mohamedbhai, former Secretary-General, Association of African Universities, and N.V. Varghese, IIEP.