Are you considering attending an international education conference in 2020? Browse through our definitive guide of international education conferences to determine what is the right fit for you or your organization. While a common thread is seen this year influenced by the new decade bringing forth innovation, creativity, and reflection; each conference provides meaningful distinctions in focus and audience. Scroll through to discover the conference that resonates with your needs and goals for this upcoming year.
2020 International Education Conferences Quick Links
Theme: Where the future unfolds.
March 18-20 | Boston, MA, USA
Attendance: 800 | Exhibitors: 50
UPCEA will be hosting its 105th conference this year! At the turn of the decade, this conference is focusing on the leaders of innovation and the changing dynamics of higher education. Transforming the future by uniting to "work together more effectively, share insights more broadly, and face our challenges more cohesively." The annual conference has a high concentration of organization decision-makers, with 76 percent of attendees being deans, directors and other senior officials.
Theme: Bridging Oceans- Internationalization and Higher Education in the Asia-Pacific
March 25-29* | Vancouver, Canada
2,500 Attendees | 200 Exhibitors
The Asia-Pacific Association for International Educators conference will explore the shifting tides of learning and teaching in an internationalized academic environment. Topics include giving access to indigenous people in the Americas, Asia, and the Pacific higher education opportunities, discussing the ever-evolving student body and faculty including newly empowered voices and communities, as well as collaborating and partnerships across the Pacific.
*The conference was postponed due to COVID-19.
Theme: Elevating Our Perspectives
April 26-28* | Denver, CO, USA
Attendees: 1,500 | Exhibitors: 52
AACSB aims to guide the next generation of global leaders through business education. This year will be the largest and most diverse conference focusing on heightening and reinvigorating the business school model and addressing new technologies and social impacts.
*The conference was held virtually due to COVID-19.
Theme: Education Abroad at a Crossroads: Actions for a Sustainable Future
March 25-27* | Kansas City, MO, USA
Attendees: Not listed| Exhibitors: 108
The Forum's Annual Conference will highlight the impact that education abroad experiences have not only on the student but on the host communities and institutions, local economies, partners, faculty and program leaders, and the environment. At the conference sessions and workshops will be centered around the theme of making education abroad more sustainable.
*The conference was held virtually on April 21-23, 2020.
Theme: Innovate, Influence, Impact
May 24-29** | St. Louis, MO, USA
Attendees: 10,000 | Exhibitors: 350
The NAFSA Annual Conference & Expo is a leader in international education conferences bringing together nearly 10,000 attendees from over 3,500 institutions and organizations from 110+ countries. The scope of the conference targets nearly every sector of international education providing dynamic and pertinent information for all who attend. While the major topics will feature innovations in international education, a new highlight will focus on how international education contributes to and revitalizes local economies.
**The conference was held virtually due to COVID-19.
Theme: Embracing the Future: A New Mandate for Business Schools
June 7-9* | Lyon, France
EFMD is an international organization that has created a global network for management development in the education sector. The annual conference promotes a dynamic networking community to discuss the challenges of management in education across the globe. Attendees include EFMD members and companies, along with educational institutions from over 90+ countries.
*This conference will now be held virtually on August 31 – September 2.
Theme: Internship Ability: Accessibility, Scalability, Sustainability
June 9-12* | Vancouver, Canada
Attendees: 400 | Exhibitors: Not listed
The Global Internship Conference is an organization committed to broadening the awareness and accessibility of academic work placement and experiential education in an international setting. GIC brings together professionals and researchers to facilitate access to global internships and implementation.
*The conference has been canceled, but GIC has announced that during the days the conference was expected to take place, they will be offering content from the conference in a virtual format. This will be offered free to all who want to attend.
Theme: Where Dream It Becomes Do It
June 28-July 1* | Anaheim, CA, USA
Attendees: 16,000 | Exhibitors: 550
The International Society for Technology in Education Conference is globally recognized as one of the largest and most comprehensive educational-focused technology conferences in the world. ISTE's vision is to transform education through a focus on rapidly growing technology and following a framework of ISTE Standards for students, educators, administrators, coaches, and computer science educators to rethink education and create innovative learning environments.
*ISTE20 will be held entirely virtually from Nov. 29 through December 5th.
Theme: Global learners, global innovation
June 29-30* | QEII Centre, London, England
Going Global provides a unique platform for industry leaders and innovators of international education to debate and bring forth ideas to better the realm of higher education globally. The annual conference will focus on envisioning the journey of the global learner of the future and how institutions might shape that journey. Attendees consist of university senior-level officials, advisers, government representatives, policy and strategy makers, and international education professionals.
*The conference has been canceled due to COVID-19.
Theme: Forging Creative Pathways
September 15-18* | Barcelona, Spain
Attendees: 8,000 | Exhibitors: 230
The European Association for International Education annual conference is the largest of its kind in Europe and provides a forum for professionals to strategically exchange best practices and workable solutions to internationalization challenges. The conference leans into creative and forward-thinking ideas as it explores new avenues to innovate design, delivery, and impact of international education programs.
*The conference has been canceled and will be held in Barcelona in 2022. The conference in 2021 will be held in Gothenburg, Sweden on 07–10 September 2021.
Theme: 20/20 Vision: Insights for the Decade Ahead
October 15-18* | Broadbeach, Gold Coast, Queensland
Attendees: 1,300 | Exhibitors: 40-50
The Australian International Education Conference provides a platform for international education professionals to grow their network both in Australia and across the globe while discovering emerging industry trends. Influenced by the new decade, the 2020 annual conference will reflect on lessons learned as well as discuss how international education might evolve and transform in the coming decade.
*This conference has been canceled due to COVID-19.
Theme: "CBIE 2020 will be a space for creative leaders and collaborators to expose the issues that institutions are facing, explore the possibilities when it comes to design, delivery, and impact, and forge the way for the innovative pathways of the future."
November 15-18* | Toronto, Canada
Attendees: 900 | Exhibitors: 35+
The Canada Bureau for International Education has put on its Annual Conference for over 50 years. The conference spans across all levels of the education system, to connect with educators across the globe and to deepen engagement with the Canadian education sector at an international level.
*The conference will be held virtually November 16 – 20th.
Theme: Rethinking Comprehensive Internationalization for a Global Generation
February 16 – 19 | Washington, DC, USA
The Association of International Education Administrators 2020 Annual Conference is considered to be one of the only conferences specifically for those in leadership roles in the sector of international education at higher education institutions.
Theme: Overcoming Challenges of Access & Opportunity in Education Abroad
March 17 – 19* | New Orleans, LA, USA
The Annual CCIS Conference considers itself to be a conference, retreat-style hybrid, offering attendees a unique experience. Attendees will explore the theme to gain insights through interactive sessions and networking.
A few themes of focus include:
- Overcoming common and frustrating challenges to get students abroad
- Supporting underrepresented students while abroad
- Research and assessment of underrepresented students in education abroad
- Developing programs and international partnerships that increase access and opportunity
*The conference has been rescheduled to Spring 2021 due to COVID-19.
Theme: Beyond 2020: Innovative Practices for an Evolving Landscape
October 29-31* | Milan, Italy
Attendees: 400 – 500
The Forum's biennial European conference will take place in Milan this year and focus its main messages about innovation in the field of education abroad. Attendees can expect to address important questions such as how the expectations of students, parents, partners, and other stakeholders changing with regard to education abroad and what the industry can do to address these changes.
*The conference will now be held virtually October 26 – 30.
This article was updated on August 24, 2020, to include new information recently released.
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