Acumen in Conversation: Insights from South East Asia Episode 4

In the latest episode of “Acumen in Conversation: Insights from South East Asia,” hosted by Marnie, Chief Commercial and Partnerships Officer at Acumen, viewers are treated to deep insights and discussions surrounding the evolving landscape of international education in South East Asia. Joined by Haike Manning, Executive Director of South East Asia, Raji Sogamaur Country Director Malaysia, Cecilia Pereira-Yates Director – External Relations, and Bang Pham Senior Manager of Partner Success Vietnam, the episode shed light on the key findings from the recent “Key Trends in South East Asia” report and explored how educational institutions can navigate and thrive in this dynamic region.

Key Insights:

  • Regional Dynamics and Cultural Nuances: The diversity within South East Asia, even within individual countries, plays a significant role in shaping education trends and decision-making. Institutions must be mindful of these nuances to effectively engage with the market.
  • Rising Demand for Quality Education: There’s a growing demand for high-quality education across South East Asia, driven by increasing wealth, cultural values, and demographic factors. Countries like Malaysia and Singapore are noted for their robust local education systems, but there’s also a significant interest in international offerings.
  • Shifts in Study Patterns and Mobility: Post-pandemic, there’s been a noticeable shift towards intra-Asia mobility. 
  • Employability and Return on Investment (ROI): A recurring theme throughout the discussion was the importance of employability and ROI. Institutions are advised to clearly communicate the employability outcomes of their graduates, as South East Asian students and parents are increasingly looking for education that offers clear pathways to job markets.
  • Transnational Education (TNE) and Diversification: With sustainability and financial considerations becoming more important, there’s a push towards TNE and diversifying education delivery methods. Partnerships that allow for regional delivery of programmes can help institutions remain relevant and accessible.
  • Technology and Industry Readiness: Emphasising the role of technology in education, the panellists discussed the necessity for institutions to incorporate tech solutions across disciplines to ensure students are industry-ready and to enhance employability prospects.
  • Focus on Emerging Markets: Institutions looking to establish or expand their presence in South East Asia should pay close attention to emerging markets like Vietnam, Indonesia, and the Philippines. These markets represent a significant portion of the region’s young population and offer vast potential for growth.

The resounding message from all five panellists is this: South East Asia offers a significant opportunity for international education providers. As the region continues to evolve, there’s a rich landscape of possibilities for institutions willing to engage and innovate.

For more detailed insights and to better understand the changing dynamics of the South East Asia education market,  download the “Key Trends in South East Asia” report. This comprehensive report offers valuable data and analysis that can guide strategic planning and decision-making for educational institutions looking to make a meaningful impact in the region.

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