n South African Journal of Higher Education - Empowered empathetic encounters : building international collaborations through researching writing in the context of South African higher education and beyond

Volume 29, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



In this article, the authors propose the idea of 'empowered empathetic encounters' as a key success factor in the building of effective international inter-institutional collaboration. By empowered empathetic encounters the authors mean those supported pivotal occasions where researchers meet with colleagues with whom they wish to collaborate in face-to-face settings in order to try to understand, in a meaningful way, each other's concerns and what it means to live and work in each other's contexts. In their work, the authors combine their personal and collective experiences with an analysis of these in the context of the existing literature. In this way, they wish to engage in a process of 'thinking the cultural through the self' (Probyn 1993) and 'thinking theory ' researchers' own experiences (Mann 2008, 10 - emphasis in original). They further suggest that engaged encounters of this nature can provide the bedrock for successful, long-term collaboration.

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