Beyond Rhetoric: Re-imagining Internationalization of Higher Education in Zimbabwe Through a Feminist Framework




internationalization in higher education, feminist framework, Zimbabwe


Traditional models of internationalization in higher education have been criticized for neglecting equity, inclusion, and social responsibilities in favor of focusing narrowly on economic objectives. This study explores an alternative feminist and collaborative framework for internationalization of higher education using a case study of Zimbabwean universities. The methodology included content analysis of documents and primary data collection. Five universities participated in semi-structured interviews with 30 participants across administration, faculty, and student leadership to explore understandings, rationales, policies, procedures, initiatives, strategies, aspirations, and challenges regarding internationalization. The findings revealed gaps between espoused priorities and lived experiences. Thematic analysis showed that incorporating diversity, representation, mutual understanding, and empowerment through feminist partnerships validated diverse knowledge and addressed intersectional needs, facilitating culturally sensitive exchanges. However, challenges of limited resources and implementing consistent, systemic changes remained. The study argues that adopting a feminist-informed and collaborative approach enriches internationalization theory and practice by centering marginalized voices in conceptualizing and implementing initiatives. By dismantling barriers and fostering empowerment, more equitable outcomes can be realized. This feminist approach holds promise for empowering all backgrounds as equal partners in higher education worldwide through wisdom and care.


Received: 16 October 2023 | Revised: 7 December 2023 | Accepted: 12 December 2023


Conflicts of Interest

The author declares that she has no conflicts of interest to this work.


Data Availability Statement

The data that supports the findings of this study are not publicly available due to privacy concerns of the participants. However, anonymized data are available from the on reasonable request. Requests should be made to and should include a brief description of the intended use of the data.




How to Cite

Garwe, E. C. (2023). Beyond Rhetoric: Re-imagining Internationalization of Higher Education in Zimbabwe Through a Feminist Framework. International Journal of Changes in Education, 1(1), 11–18.



Research Articles