Over the last half-century, the GCC states have invested on a huge scale in higher education, but the stated commitment to internationally recognized excellence has also had to come to terms with tradition. These pressure points are examined here in a number of comparative studies, and cover among other topics: higher education as soft power to promote regional or global influence, intense reliance on foreign instructors, citizen entitlements, badu and hadar divisions, gender separation, different visions of language of instruction, marginalization of foreign students and faculty outside work, and branch campuses of foreign universities. Despite efforts to train and employ nationals, the vast majority of health workers remain non-local, and major challenges remain in fields such as science and technology. Expenditure has not always led to the effective reform of underperforming educational systems, and institutions often fall short of their world-class aspirations. The studies in this book explore ways of making institutions better realise the balance between global and local.