All 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals are facilitated by international higher education partnerships

International higher education collaborations contribute considerably to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

Quality Education, Partnerships for the Goals, and Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure emerge as strong linkages between partnership activities and favourable outcomes in all 17 SDGs, according to the research. 

International higher education collaborations enable students, academics, industry, and the broader society share knowledge and ideas, drive research and innovation, and improve skills through teaching, learning, and practise, all of which contribute to the SDGs. 

However, because the SDGs are interconnected and unlikely to be realised in isolation, interdisciplinary methods are required. 

Because they bring together multiple sorts of partners from various disciplines, sectors, and nations, international higher education partnerships are better able to handle societal concerns than single organisations. In comparison to other interventions, the study shows that foreign aid interventions in the form of an international partnership provide value. 

The success of the partnerships depends on mutual trust and open communication, a shared goal, and a long-term commitment to working together, as well as the involvement of senior institutional leaders. The COVID-19 pandemic, complex governance systems and opposition to change in the higher education sector, and a fragile financial environment are all challenges that need to be addressed through a collective effort. 

All partners benefit from successful international collaboration, including enhanced curricula, novel pedagogies, and a better international reputation. The partnership concept offers tremendous value to international donors’ and funders’ investments. In tackling global concerns, the international HE community plays a critical role.  

Without the contribution of higher education, none of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals can be met. We must preserve and grow sustainable and innovative funding conditions for higher education, based on the principles of equitable partnerships, in order to maximize these benefits. 

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