Long-term planning is tough for industry managers due to market volatility and political turmoil, indicating a rough year ahead for many companies.
These thoughts were provided by a group of senior contacts who participated in our leadership snapshot poll.
More than sixty executives, including CEOs, pro-vice chancellors, directors, provosts, and edtech entrepreneurs from sixteen countries, shared their perspectives on current market trends and the characteristics of effective leadership in the higher education business.
Over 92% of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed that immigration is presently being exploited as a political tool on a global scale, with 44% citing geopolitics and macro considerations as a key worry.
In recent weeks, Universities UK International has been compelled on many occasions to respond to media speculation over prospective changes to student immigration laws, and industry officials have been reminded of the sensitivity of enrollment flows to government policy.
Responses such as “geopolitical instability and economic crisis” and “political meddling” were viewed as prevalent risks, with one respondent predicting that “institutions and governments cannot react quickly enough to meet the demand” in 2023.
Additionally, artificial intelligence rose to the top of the agenda, appearing on both the list of worries and the list of potential. According to one responder, “the recent emergence of AI has the potential to have highly worrisome effects on the quality of [university] applications and student success in courses.”
While AI was suggested to have the ability to ‘undermine’ the quality of many aspects of educational delivery, others recognized its use in “supporting marketing automation” and managing rising demand.
Eighty-seven percent of respondents said that education is being disrupted and would develop either through technology or new delivery methods. “Adoption of relevant technology” and “improved hybrid delivery” were cited as potential to explore in order to increase global student access.
The highly expected “return of China” and “reopening” of borders were regarded as 2023’s most significant opportunities. China has instructed students studying remotely in the country to travel to their respective study sites “as soon as feasible” in recent days.
In the study, post-pandemic demand and greater global student mobility are viewed as a historical moment that requires action.
According to one responder, “the world and people have changed” and there are several “new discussions and connections” for organizations seeking growth to use. In fact, eighty percent of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed that the number of public-private partnerships will expand this year.