British universities should welcome foreign students

What have the prime minister of Iraq and the president of Iran got in common? Not much, you might think. However, the fact is they are among 55 current world leaders who have studied at a UK university before taking office, writes Richard Garner for The Independent.

Researchers from the Higher Education Policy Institute, or HEPI, the influential university think-tank, have been beavering away to try to find out how many world leaders came to Britain to study, to show how encouraging international students to come here can help to bolster Britain's influence in the world.

“The Home Office wants to restrict the number of foreigners coming to study here, while other parts of government recognise the economic benefits,” says Nick Hillman, HEPI's director. “It is a straight fight, pitching security against economics. That's a tragedy, because all sorts of other advantages are being ignored. We punch above our weight internationally partly because of the soft-power benefits that arise from educating the world's leaders.”
Full report on The Independent site