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Strategic Alignment of Tertiary Education and Economies in East and Southeast Asia

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Countries across the East and Southeast Asia region are experiencing a remarkable expansion of tertiary education enrollments. In this context, the strategic alignment of tertiary education institutions with rapidly changing economic environments has become increasingly necessary to meet the emerging needs of individual students, businesses, and wider economies. This paper maps the current state of alignment between tertiary education and labor markets in the region. Particular focus is given to second- and third-tier institutions, which have played a crucial role in enabling the expansion of enrollments and serving the diverse needs of societies. Policy guidelines are outlined and discussed to enhance alignment; namely the improvement of public-private partnerships, regional cooperation, external efficiency accountability, and fostering realistic expectations among graduates. Above all, it is maintained that the realization of such policy objectives will be pivotal to the future success of tertiary education institutions and can be pursued without undermining the broader educational functions of the tertiary education sector.

Affiliations: 1: The University of Hong Kong ; 2: The University of Hong Kong


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