How do different countries support studies of their language and culture in foreign universities?
One task of the Finnish National Agency for Education (EDUFI) is to support the studies of Finnish language and culture at universities abroad. While evaluating the objectives and operating methods of this set of tasks, EDUFI sent a survey to some peer organisations that support studies of their language and culture in foreign universities. The respondents were the Dutch-speaking countries, Estonia, Iceland, Latvia, Norway, Slovakia and Sweden.
In all countries the funding is provided by the government, in most cases by the ministry responsible for education and research and/or culture. There are differences in the objectives and emphases of the organisations. In addition to supporting the teaching and increasing the recognisability of their language and culture, there was mention of strengthening the country’s international relations, among other things.
There are both similarities and differences in the support forms that the organisations offer to universities, teachers and students. On the basis of the report, it can be noted that all could learn from each other in some respects. It is EDUFI’s intention to continue cooperation with these peer organisations.