Professor Anthony Welch

Professor of Education


Phone: +61 2 9351 3175

Fax: +61 2 9351 4580

Building.Room: A35.542

Research interests

Educational history, sociology and philosophy

  • Sociology of education

Educational systems: administration, management and leadership

  • Higher education
  • International and comparative education


international higher education, Australian education, comparative and international education, education and social policy, education and equality

Professional biography

Tony specialises in national and international policy and practice, principally in education, and cross-cultural analysis and research. He has extensive experience in many countries, including in the Asia Pacific, and has published widely, contributing numerous analyses of issues such as cross-cultural interactions; rural education, comparative research methods in education; and  practical reform affecting multiculturalism, indigenous minorities, international students, higher education reforms, internationalisation of higher education in the Asia Pacific, and changes to the academic profession.

After working as a school teacher in Australia and the UK, Tony completed both his M.A. and Ph. D. at the University of London. He has been Visiting Professor at universities and think tanks in the US, UK, France, Japan, China and Germany. His work has appeared in numerous languages, including German, Russian, French, Italian, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese and Korean.

Extensive international contacts with organisations such as the OECD, UNDP, UNESCO, World Bank, ADB, CEDEFOP (Europe), BIBB (Germany), IREDU (France), the Fulbright Commission, and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching (CFAT), has allowed Tony to contibute to major projects and reforms in various parts of the world. He has consulted to governments in Australia, Japan, Vietnam, Korea, Afghanistan, and Europe, to foundations in the USA, and to international agencies, principally in the area of higher education reform.

Among other projects, Tony was part of an international team engaged on a major 14-nation study of the academic profession (published in 1996 as The Academic Profession. Portraits from Fourteen Countries). He was recently involved in a multinational study of Academic Salaries, and a major Higher Education project focused on Asia, for the ADB.

Tony was a Fulbright New Century Scholar for 2007–8, in a year devoted to higher education research. He is on the Editorial Board of 10 international journals, and reviews for many more, as well as reviewing book manuscripts for several international publishers, and research proposals for several governments.

Recent work includes:

- Counting the Cost.Financing Higher Education for Inclusive Growth in Asia (ADB 2012)

- Higher Education in Southeast Asia. Blurring borders, Changing Balance (Routledge 2011)

- ASEAN Industries and the Challenge from China. (Palgrave Macmillan 2011)


  • Adjunct Professor, Yanbian University, Jilin, China. 

  • Australian Research Council (REC) 2012

    Fulbright New Century Scholar (2007-8)

    DAAD Scholar 1997, 2001, 2009

    Visiting Professor, Institut National de Recherche Pedagogie (2002)

    Visiting Professor, Waseda University, 1997

    Visiting Research Fellow, Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of TEaching (1997)

    Visiting Professor, RIHE, Hiroshima University (2003-4)

    Visiting Professor, University of Hong Kong 2010-11, 2012. 

    National Award for Undergraduate Teaching (1993)


  • Adjunct Professor, Ph. D. Supervisor, Tianjin University, China. 

Professional and community roles

  • Member of International Advisory Board    Comparative Education (UK)

  • Member of Editorial Board    World Studies in Education

  • Member of International Editorial Board    Syngritike kai Diethnes Ekpaideftike Epitheorise (Comparative and International Education Review) [Greek-bi-lingual journal]

  • Member of Editorial Board    Policy Futures in Education (on-line journal)

  • Member of Editorial Board    Research in Comparative and International Education

  • Associate Editor    Journal of International Education

  • Editorial Board Member, 

    Asian Education and Development Studies

  • Member, International Advisory Board, 

    Palgrave International and Development Education Book Series

  • Board Member, 

    Pittsburgh Studies in Comparative and International Education


Current projects

  • International Study of Academic Salaries. (Australian Representative). Coordinated by Boston College Centre for International Higher Education (CIHE) and Russian School of Higher Economics, Moscow
  • Costs and Financing of HIgher Education in Dynamic Asia (Asian Development Bank [ADB]) Examination of costs and financing issues of higher education in Asia, with a focus on SE Asia. Analaysis includes comparison of public and private higher education proportions in different states of SE Asia, transparency issues, the contribution of higher education to national innovation systems, the costs of brain drain / circulation, the relative costs of public and private higher education, both domestically and internationally, costs and finance of religious higher education systems, and student loans schemes.
  • Public and Private Higher Education in SE Asia (Fulbright New Century Scholar Project) Examination of the changing balance between public and private higher education in SE Asia (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Viet Nam), including privatisation of public sector universities, and including issues such as governance, transparency, brain drain / brain circulation, and the role of higher education in national innovation systems.
  • Internationalisation of Chinese Universities (U. Sydney, CCK Project) Analysis of dimensions of internationalisation of selected universities in different regions of China, including Cross Straights relations (with Taiwan). Includes background of the Chinese professoriate, the Chinese higher education system, and several case studies.
  • The Chinese Knowledge Diaspora (ARC Discovery) International study of the scientific communication networks of mainland Chinese intellectuals who work in universities abroad,

Current research students

Project title Degree Research student
The Chinese knowledge diaspora and the international knowledge network: a comparative mixed methods study in Australian and Canadian universities. PhD Zhen Zhang
Extending girls education in Afghanistan. PhD Dr Attaullah Wahidyar
The comparative advantage of an Australian university degree. MEd(Res) Christopher Lawrance
The persistence of under-represented minority women in STEM (science, technology, engineering, maths) PhD Deborah Tully
Persistent Inequality: The Chilean voucher system and its impacts on socio-economic segregation and quality of education PhD Jorge Rojas
Parental Influences on Education and Career Choices of Arab Females. PhD Nada Labib
Meeting the needs of refugee pupils in Australia PhD (Ed) Angela Rose

Selected publications


Book chapters

  • Welch, A., Königsberg, P., Rochecauste, J., and Collard, G. . (2014). Aboriginal Education in Australia: Policies, Problems, Prospects. . In Crossley, M., Hancock, G., and Sprague, T. (Eds.), EDUCATION IN AUSTRALIA NEW ZEALAND AND THE PACIFIC London, New York: Bloomsbury.
  • Welch, A., . (2013). Evidence Based Policy: epistemologically specious, ideologically unsound. In Proctor, H., Brownlee, P., Freebody, P. (Ed.), Educational Heresies: New and enduring controversies over practice and policy. Dordrecht, New York: Springer.
  • Welch, A., and Hao, J. . (2013). ‘Hai Gui’ and ‘Hai Dai’: The job-seeking experiences of high-skilled returnees to China. In Mok, K-H., and Yu, K-M. (Eds.), Internationalization of Higher Education in East Asia (pp. 90–111), London, New York: .
  • Welch, A. . (2013). Local Tradition, International Engagement. Challenges for the Asian Professoriate. In Seddon, T., & Levin, J. (Ed.), Educators, Professionalism and Politics. Global Transitions, National Spaces and Professional Projects. (World Yearbook of Education 2013) (pp. 117–133), Oxford, New York: Routledge.
  • Welch, A.,. (2012). Academic Salaries, Massification And The Rise Of An Underclass In Australia. In Altbach, P. et al. (Ed.), Paying the Professoriate: A Global Comparison of Compensation and Contracts. (pp. 61–71), London: Routledge.
  • Yang, R., and Welch, A., . (2012). Belonging from Afar? Transnational Academic Mobility and the Chinese Knowledge Diaspora: an Australian Case Study. In N. Bagnall and E. Cassity (Eds.), Education and Belonging (pp. 123–137), New York: Nova Science.
  • Welch, A. . (2012). EDUCATION. Private Schooling and Class Privilege: Private Wealth, Public Squalor?. In Furze, B., Savy, P., Brym, R., and Lie, J. (Eds.), SOCIOLOGY IN TODAY'S WORLD (2nd ed., pp. 215–239), Melbourne: CENGAGE.
  • Welch, A., . (2012). Contributing to the Southeast Asian Knowledge Economy? Australian Offshore Campuses in Malaysia and Vietnam. In Nelson, A., and Wei, I. (Eds.), The Global University: Past, Present and Future Perspectives. (pp. 45–73), London, New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Welch, A. . (2012). Regionalism and the Limits of Regionalism in Indonesian Higher Education. In Neubauer, D., and Hawkins, J. (Eds.), Regionalism in Asia-Pacific Higher Education London, New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Welch, A. . (2011). Finance, State Capacity, Privatisation and Transparency in South-East Asian HIgher Education. In Armstrong, S and Chapman, B. (Eds.), Financing HIgher Education and Economic Development in East Asia (pp. 49–82), Canberra: ANU Press.
  • Welch, A., and Yang, R., . (2011). A Pearl on the Silk Road? Regionalising a Regional University in China. . In John D. Palmer, Amy Roberts, Young Ha Cho and Gregory S. Ching (Eds.), The Internationalization of East Asian Higher Education. Globalization's Impact. (pp. 63–90), London, New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Welch, A., . (2011). The Dragon, the Tiger Cubs and Higher Education: Competitive and Cooperative China-ASEAN Relations in the GATS Era. . In Jarvis, D., and Welch, A., (Eds.), ASEAN Industries and the Challenge from China. (pp. 39–122), London: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Welch, A.,. (2011). Introduction: Structural Changes, Economic Challenges, and Political Accommodation. Managing the Rise of China in Southeast Asia. . In Darryl Jarvis and Anthony Welch (Eds.), ASEAN Industries and the Challenge from China. (pp. 1–17), London: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Welch, A., . (2011). Higher Education in South-East Asia: Achievement and Aspiration. In Brock, C., and Pe Symaco, L., (Eds.), Education in South-East Asia (pp. 265–282), Oxford: Symposium.
  • Welch, A. ,. (2010). Australian Education in an Era of Markets, and Managerialism – A Critical Perspective. . In Masemann, V and Majhanovich, S., (Eds.), Clamoring for a Better World. A tribute to David N. Wilson Rotterdam: Sense.
  • Welch, A., and Cai, H-C., . (2010). Enter the Dragon: the Internationalisation of Chinese Higher Education. In Ryan, J. (Ed.), China’s Higher Education and Internationalisation. (pp. 9–33), London: Routledge.
  • Welch, A., . (2010). Internationalisation of Vietnamese Higher Education: Retrospect and Prospect. . In Harman, G., Hayden, M. and Pham T. (Eds.), Reforming Higher Education in Viet Nam. Dordrecht, Heidelberg, New York: Springer.
  • Welch, A. . (2010). The Challenge of Comparative Research: A Critical Introduction. In Markauskaite, L., Freebody, P., and Irwin, J., (Eds.), Methodological Choice and Design. Scholarship, Policy and Practice in Social and Educational Research (pp. 187–202), Dordrecht, Heidelberg, New York: Springer.
  • Welch, A., . (2010). Southeast Asian Higher Education in the Global Knowledge System: Governance, Privatization, Infrastructure. In MOK, Ka-Ho (Ed.), The Search for New Governance of Higher Education in Asia (pp. 153–170), New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Welch, A. . (2010). Nation-State, Diaspora, and Comparative Education. The Place of Place. In , Changing landscapes, topographies and scenarios: Schooling systems and Higher Education Dordrecht, Heidelberg, New York: Springer.
  • Welch, A. . (2010). Measuring Up? The Competitive Position of SE Asian Higher Education. In Sarjit Kaur, Morshidi Sirat and William G. Tierney (Eds.), Higher Education in the Asia Pacific. Critical Issues in Quality Assurance and Rankings. Penang: Sains Universiti Malaysia Press..
  • Welch, A., . (2010). Viet Nam, Malaysia and the Global Knowledge System. In Portnoy, L. Bagley, S., and Rust, V (Eds.), Higher Education and International Competitiveness (pp. 143–160), Chicago: Chicago University Press.
  • Welch, A., . (2009). Mammon, Markets and Managerialism - Asia Pacific Perspectives on Contemporary Educational Reforms. . In Cowen, R., and Kazamias, A. (Eds.), International Handbook of Comparative Education (pp. 587–600), Dordrecht, Heidelberg, New York: Springer.
  • Welch, A., . (2009). Finance, State Capacity, Privatisation and Transparency in Southeast Asian Higher Education. In , Financing Access and Equity in Higher Education. Amsterdam: Sense.
  • Welch, A. (2008). Private schooling and class privilege: Private wealth and public squalour?. In Ann Crabb (Ed.), Sociology in Today's World (pp. 250–274), South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.
  • Welch, A. and Zhang, Z. . (2008). The Chinese Knowledge Diaspora: Communication Networks among overseas Chinese Intellectuals, . In D. Epstein at al (Ed.), Epstein D. et al (Eds) Geographies of Knowledge, Geometries of Power: Framing the Future of Education, World Yearbook of Education 2008.. (pp. 338–354), London: Routledge.
  • Welch, A. (2008). Myths and Modes of Mobility: the Changing Face of Academic Mobility in the Global Era. In Byram M, Dervin F. (Ed.), Students, Staff and Academic Mobility in Higher Education (Vol. 1, pp. 292–311), Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
  • Welch, A. (2007). Making Education Policy. In R Connell;C Campbell;M Vickers;A Welch;D Foley;N Bagnall (Ed.), Education, Change and Society (Vol. 1, pp. 1–33), Not known: UNSW Press.
  • Welch, A, Helme, S, Lamb, S. (2007). Rurality and inequality in education: the Australian experience. In Teese R, Lamb S, Duru-Bellat M (Ed.), International Studies in Educational Inequality, Theory and Policy. Inequality in Education Systems (Vol. 2, pp. 271–293), Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer.
  • Welch, A. (2007). The City and the bush. In R Connell;C Campbell;M Vickers;A Welch;D Foley;N Bagnall (Ed.), Education, Change and Society (Vol. 1, pp. 70–93), Not known: UNSW Press.
  • Welch, A. (2007). Cultural Difference and Identity. In Raewyn Connell ... [et al.]. (Ed.), Education, Change & Society (pp. 155–187), Melbourne, AUS: Oxford University Press.
  • Welch, A. (2007). Ekpaideuthesis stin Australia: Prakliseis kai Allages (Australian education: Challenge and change). In Mattheou, D. (Ed.), Syngritiki Spouthi Tis Ekpaideusis (The Comparative Study of Education) (Vol. 1, pp. 589–672), Athens: Atrapos Publishers.
  • Welch, A. (2007). Guro-baruka no Kiki to Daigaku no Kokusaika: Osutoraria ni mirareru Koutou Kyouiku no Genzai. In Morimoto Toyotomi;Don Nakanishi (Ed.), Ekkyou suru Tami to Kyouiku. Ikkyou ni Sodachi Chikyu de Manabu?? (pp. 257–286), Kyoto Japan: Academia Shuppankai.
  • Welch, A. (2006). Konkurrenzkultur? Internationalisierung des australischen Hochschulsystem in der Ara der Globalisierung. In E Fuchs (Ed.), Bildgung International. Historische Perspektiven und aktuelle Entwicklungen (Vol. 1, pp. 305–329), Wurzberg, Germany: Ergon.
  • Welch, A. (2005). Conclusion: New Millennium, New Milieu?. In A. Welch (Ed.), The Professoriate. Profile of a Profession (pp. 205–208), Dordrecht: Springer.
  • Welch, A. (2005). From peregrination academica to global academic: The internationalisation of the profession. In A. Welch (Ed.), The Professoriate. Profile of a Profession (pp. 71–96), Dordrecht: Springer.
  • Welch, A. (2005). Challenge and change: The academic profession in uncertain times. In A. Welch (Ed.), The Professoriate. Profile of a Profession (pp. 1–19), Dordrecht: Springer.
  • Welch, A. (2005). Higher education for a New Korea. Internationalized or Globalized?. In K.-H. Mok and R. James (Eds.), Globalisation and Higher Education in East Asia (pp. 99–136), Singapore: Marshall Cavendish Academic.
  • Welch, A. (2005). Preface. In A. Welch (Ed.), The Professoriate. Profile of a Profession (pp. vii–ix), Dordrecht: Springer.

Journal articles

  • Welch., A. . (2013). Indigenous (Higher) Education in Australia: Problems, Policies, Prospects.. Journal of International Education. (Japan). , 19, 117–121.
  • Welch, Anthony. (2013). Many Paths, One Goal. Southeast Asia as Knowledge Society. Asia Pacific Journal of Education, 33(2), 197–211. DOI:
  • Welch, A., . (2012). China-ASEAN relations in Higher Education. An Analytical Approach. Frontiers of Chinese Education, 7(4), 465–485.
  • Welch, A. . (2012). China South East Asia Relations in Higher Education: an analytical framework. Frontiers of Education in China, 7(4), 465–485. DOI:Doi 10.3868/s110-001-012-0024-6
  • Welch, A. and Hao, J. . (2012). Diaspora and Returnees. Twin Sources of Innovation in Chinese Higher Education. Frontiers of Chinese Education.
  • Welch, A. . (2012). The limits of regionalism in Indonesian higher education. Asian Education and Development Studies , 1(1), 24–42. DOI:10.1108/20463161211194441
  • Welch, A. . (2012). Seek Knowledge Throughout the World: Mobility in Islamic Higher Education. . Research in Comparative and International Education (Special Issue on Academic Mobility). , 7(1), 70–80. DOI:
  • Hao, J. and Welch, A. . (2012). A Tale of Sea Turtles: Job-Seeking Experiences of Hai Gui (High-skilled returnees) upon return to China. HIgher Education Policy (Special Issue on Transnational Higher Education), , 1–18. DOI::10.1057/hep.2012.4
  • Yang, R., and Welch, A. (2012). Does China Have a World Class University? The Case of Tsinghua. HIgher Education, 63(5), 645–666. DOI:0.1007/s10734-011-9465-4
  • Welch, A. . (2011). PISA Performance and Australian Education: Myths and REalities. . Revista Española de Educación Comparada, , 18(Special), 89–124.
  • Altbach, P., and Welch, A. (2011). The Perils of Commercialism: Australia's Example. International Higher Education, 62, 21–22.
  • Yang, R., and Welch, A. . (2010). 'Globalisation, Transnational Academic Mobility and the Chinese Knowledge Diaspora: An Australian Case Study' . Discourse. Australian Journal of Educational Studies (Special Issue on Trans-national academic mobility), 31(5), 593–607.
  • Welch, A., . (2010). 'Diaspora, Re-Aspora. La Place du lieu in education comparee', l' 3, (Special Issue, Edited by Julia Resnik, Anthony Welch, and Jürgen Schriewer: “Etat des lieu, nouveaux enjeux, nouveaux debats”, Pp. 195-241. l'education Comparee, 3, 195–241.
  • Amirrachman, A, Syafi'I, S, Welch, A. (2008). Decentralisation in Indonesian Education: the Promise and the Price. World Studies In Education, 9(1), 31–53.
  • Welch, A, Zhang, Z. (2008). Higher Education and Global Talent Flows: Brain Drain, Overseas Chinese Intellectuals, and Diasporic Knowledge Networks. Higher Education Policy, 21(4), 519–537.
  • Welch, A. (2007). Ho Chi Minh Meets the Market: Public and Private Higher Education in Viet Nam. International Education Journal, 8(3), 35–56.
  • Welch, A. (2007). Blurred Vision?: Public and Private Higher Education in Indonesia. Higher Education, 54(5), 665–687.
  • Welch, A. (2007). Building bridges in higher education. Singapore-China relations in the GATS era. Journal of University Studies, 35, 161–171.
  • Welch, A. (2007). Governance issues in South East Asian higher education: Finance, devolution and transparency in the global era. Asia Pacific Journal of Education, 27(3), 237–253.
  • Welch, A. (2007). The minnow and the whale: Singapore-China relations in higher education. International Higher Education, 46, 22–24.
  • Welch, A. (2005). Accountability or accountancy? Governance and university evaluation systems in an era of performativity. Comparative and International Education Review, 5, 116–144.
  • Welch, A, Zhen, Z. (2005). The Chinese Knowledge Diaspora: Communication networks among overseas Chinese intellectuals in the globalisation era. Bijiao Jiaoyu Yanjiu, 26(12), 31–37.