Dutch student associations have published the results of a survey among international students in the Netherlands. In this “Annual International Student Survey 2019” (the second of its kind) they note that international students still have a hard time integrating with Dutch students.
This hardly comes as a surprise. Ever since the start of massive student mobility (1987, Erasmus), those active in the field have noticed that domestic students – all over Europe and globally – tend to stick together and are not too eager and hospitable towards international students. Even less when they need to speak in another language. There is a whole body of knowledge – published and in the grey literature – about the fact and what has been tried to improve the situation. The whole “buddy” concept stems from this issue. It is a pity that the Dutch report simply gives the results of this one-year survey and does not even put it in the context with the same survey of the previous year. “How is the situation developing from last year and before?” “How is the situation in other parts of the world compare to where we are?” These are very basic questions one needs to ask when writing about anything that one would like to see improved. A missed opportunity, in spite of the nice-looking visuals.