ACE, Lumina Foundation to Establish Alliance for Global Innovation in Tertiary Education
July 10, 2017

ACE is collaborating with Lumina Foundation to create a global learning community for the exchange of innovative practices shown to increase postsecondary degree attainment. 

Coordinated by ACE’s Center for Internationalization and Global Engagement (CIGE), a $551,200 grant from Lumina will support the formation of the Alliance for Global Innovation in Tertiary Education, a network of senior practitioners, thought leaders, policymakers and private sector employers across eight countries. Alliance members will meet in Washington in early 2018, and again outside the United States in 2019.

During this two-year initiative, the Alliance will identify flexible, student-centered approaches that enable diverse student populations to navigate the postsecondary system throughout their lifetimes to obtain knowledge, skills and credentials. Achieving more equitable outcomes for a changing student demographic is a central goal of the project, which will explore innovative modes of delivery, credentialing, credit recognition and degree pathways among the participating countries.

While national postsecondary systems are unique, the Alliance will test the hypothesis that strategies for achieving success for underserved students are transferrable across national borders. Brad Farnsworth, ACE’s vice president for internationalization and global engagement, noted: “The challenge of increasing postsecondary attainment rates, and of reducing attainment gaps based on race, ethnicity or other factors, is not limited to the United States. The Alliance will identify innovations that have worked in other countries and explore how they might be adapted to improve outcomes for students in the American system.”

In addition to its organizational role, CIGE will produce a series of thought leadership papers, collect outcomes data from participating countries and develop a set of case studies with analysis and recommendations. Project outcomes will be shared widely among the U.S. higher education community.

ACE intends to sustain and possibly expand the Alliance to include other countries following the two-year project cycle.

Lumina Foundation is an independent, private foundation in Indianapolis that is committed to making opportunities for learning beyond high school available to all. Lumina envisions a system that is easy to navigate, delivers fair results and meets the nation’s need for talent through a broad range of credentials. The Foundation’s goal is to prepare people for informed citizenship and for success in a global economy.

For more information, contact CIGE at