Higher Education in the World 6

Towards a Socially Responsible University: Balancing the Global with the Local

The 6th HEIW Report deals with the dual responsibilities of universities at local and global scale, exploring the potential conflict, or intrinsic difficulties, in addressing both local demands of society based on the race for global competitiveness and local and global demands to contribute to a more equitable and sustainable society, at local and global scales.

86 experts from 28 countries have contributed to a dissection of the topic and the identification of good practices that can help academic leaders and policy-makers to realize the highest purposes of education and research.

For the first time, the HEIW Report offers fully open access. With this new format, GUNi aims to make the report content available for everybody, regardless of economic reach.

The report was launched in Barcelona on the 10th March 2017 and it is currenty being presented in several conferences and seminars around the world: Ghana, UK, Colombia, Mexico, Italy, Nigeria, South Africa...

Objectives of the Report

The specific aims of HEIW6 are:

a) To explore the potential conflict, or intrinsic challenges, both in addressing societal demands based on the race for global competitiveness and in contributing to a more equitable and sustainable society at local and global level;

b) To analyse the dual responsibilities of HEIs at local and global level and how to serve and deal with both at the same time.

c) To reflect on how ‘glocal’ engagement should be included in teaching, learning, research and institutional activities, governance and leadership;

d) To describe and analyse the current concept of university social engagement and social responsibility

e) To identify how the different social actors are involved in glocal engagement practices, and how they interact with HEIs;

f) To illustrate how HEIs have linked with society at local and global levels, identifying and presenting the different experiences, mechanisms and structures, and best practices on glocal engagement from around the world.


  • UNESCO. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • The Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP)

Sponsored by

  • Generalitat de Catalunya. Ministry of Business and Employment. Department of Research and Universities
  • Generalitat de Catalunya. Ministry for Foreign Action and Open Government