IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


VIRTUAL EVENT: National narratives in policymakers’ constructions of higher education students

04 June 2020, 2:00 pm–3:00 pm

University students studying in the library. Image: Tony Slade for UCL Digital Media

In this webinar, Rachel Brooks will consider the ways in which students are commonly understood by higher education ‘policy influencers’.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







Centre for Global Higher Education

Drawing on interviews with higher education policy influencers from six European countries (Denmark, England, Germany, Ireland, Poland, and Spain), Rachel Brooks will consider the ways in which students were commonly understood by this particular group of social actors.

It will be argued that although a number of the students' characteristics identified by the interviewees are evident across many nation-states within Europe, they were frequently discussed in terms of very distinct national narratives, with policy influencers often making reference to their country’s specific history and culture.

Rachel will explore the implications of such narratives for European higher education and geopolitical relations more generally.


Image: Tony Slade for UCL Digital Media 

About the Speaker

Rachel Brooks

Professor of Higher Education at University College London

Rachel's recent books include Education and Society (2018) and Materialities and Mobilities in Education (2017, with Johanna Waters). She is currently leading a European Research Council-funded project on constructions of higher education students across Europe.

More about Rachel Brooks