This baseline research was commissioned by the British Council in Turkey with the aim to explore how current partnerships in higher education can be strengthened at both national and an institutional level.

The baseline research aims to provide recommendations on how to improve trust and understanding between the two sectors in both countries by looking at the opportunities, best practices and ways to overcome barriers to expand and diversify higher education partnerships between Turkey and the UK – at both national and institutional levels.

There have been positive relations between the UK and Turkey in higher education, however they haven’t fully realized their potential due to some barriers. This research was commissioned in order to understand the current situation, potential opportunities, capacity, and obstacles encountered before, during and after establishing institutional partnerships between higher education institutions in the UK and in Turkey. 

Between November 2020 to February 2021, qualitative data were collected in both Turkey and the UK from 30 universities and 15 national policy making institutions. Individual interviews were conducted with representatives of key national-level organisations and higher education institutions, focus groups with academic staff and students, and an analysis of strategy documents, from both national organisations and individual higher education institutions.

New recommendations for national and institutional level higher education collaborations

The baseline research offers  recommendations in different areas. The research findings also highlight that online collaboration will create new opportunities between the two countries under Covid-19 circumstances. Among the prominent suggestions  in the field of education are the following:

  • Expand exemplary successful education partnerships between the two countries
  • Maintain and expand allocated funds for Turkey-UK partnerships covering various subject areas (research, education, scholarship -Mevlana, Turing-, policy dialogue, meetings, etc.).
  • Develop innovative online collaboration models such as lifelong learning partnerships, open university collaborations, more diverse forms of short-term mobility, internship programmes, tailor-made summer/winter schools and joint graduate/postgraduate programmes.
  • Develop a comprehensive and sustainable recruitment policy for UK academics in Turkey.
  • Ensure that the national qualifications frameworks in both countries work well with each other, especially for joint diploma programmes.
  • Make greater use of alumni networks to develop and encourage new initiatives.

You can download the full report from below.

  • Strengthening UK-Turkey Partnerships in Higher Education- Baseline Research (Adobe PDF 1MB)