Will Market Competition Assure Academic Quality? An Analysis of the UK and US Experience
A major change that has accompanied the worldwide ‘massification’ of higher education is the new-found openness of policy makers to the use of competitive markets to steer the university sector. In many countries efforts to improve the quality of publicly provided higher education, both in teaching and in research, are leading to experiments with market-based policy instruments (Teixeira et al. 2004). The perceived quality of universities in the competitive US system – which Trow (2000) has termed the ‘American advantage’ – has inspired much of this interest in market forces. While a number of these market experiments may also be motivated by a desire to restrict public expenditures in rapidly expanding systems of higher education, many policy makers and academics believe that there is a relationship between the degree of market competition and academic quality (Dill 2005).
KeywordsHigh Education Market Competition Academic Quality League Table Academic Standard
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