Internationalization Strategy and Budget

Strengthening Internationalization

Internationalization is seen as an important goal for the Israeli academia, with the aim of attracting outstanding students from abroad and strengthening the international reputation of Israeli institutions. Internationalization is seen as important not only from an academic viewpoint, but also from the perspective of Israeli’s diplomatic and economic relations with other countries.

The percentage of international students studying in Israel currently stands at approximately 1.4% and is significantly lower than the average in OECD countries of 6%. This stems from a number of factors, including language difficulties (most instruction at institutions of higher education in Israel is offered in Hebrew) and regulatory barriers such as visa and work conditions.

In the framework of the CHE/PBC’s program to promote internationalization, quantitative goals have been set for international student enrolment such that by 2022 it is expected that approximately 24,000 international students will study in Israel, as opposed to approximately 11,000 international students in 2017.

CHE/PBC has set a number of quantitative goals regarding international student enrollment between the years 2017-2022, as follows:

  • An increase of 120% in the number of international postdoctoral students
  • An increase of 60% in the number of international doctoral students
  • An increase of 100% in the number of international master’s degree students
  • An increase of 30% in the number of international bachelor’s degree students
  • An increase of 150% in the number of international students enrolled in short-term programs (such as summer courses, semester abroad, and so forth

Policy and Budget for Internationalization

The CHE/PBC internationalization program has four main areas of focus:

  • Increasing the amount of international students coming to Israel (see policy guidelines on this issue here)
  • Strengthening the international competency of Israeli students
  • Expanding international research cooperation
  • Building local institutional capability via international cooperation

The CHE/PBC’s efforts to promote internationalization include: Developing a national vision and goals to promote internationalization; leading a national campaign to brand and market Israel as an attractive study destination; streamlining academic regulations and removing barriers facing international students and researchers coming to Israel (such as visas, work permits, etc.); and promoting academic cooperation with other countries.

Internationalization Budget

In order to enhance internationalization in the Israeli higher education system, the PBC has allocated more than 100 million dollars for the years 2017-2022. The budget is mainly to support internationalization within Israeli higher education institutions and for scholarship programs for international students.