Student mobility, risk and changing geopolitics of international education

The challenge

International education enriches Australia’s universities, culture, society and the economy. International students create long-lasting ties that enhance Australia’s multilateral relationships and international position. This research focuses on the impact of changing geopolitics on student mobility and student preference. It is important given ongoing policy considerations and reflection on the impact policy changes can have for the Australian sector.

Project overview

This project will investigate the impacts of changing geopolitics on student mobilities between Australia and China, India and Vietnam. The project uses a multi-method research design to generate new knowledge about how pre, during and post COVID-19 government policy responses and regional and global geopolitics affect inbound and outbound student mobilities.


The expected outcomes include evidence-based recommendations for Australian government and university planning to build a resilient international education sector and co-designed resources to support international and domestic students and universities. Substantial benefits are expected as international education is vital to Australian higher education, society, culture, and economy.

Project team


1 June 2022 – 1 June 2025


Australian Research Council Discovery Project



student mobility, geopolitics, international education, international students, Australia, China, Vietnam, India, governance and policy, leadership