Higher Education Systems and Institutions, Lithuania
HE System Development
Lithuania, a country of 2.9 m in 2018 (3.7 m in 1991), is a Baltic country influenced by its turbulent historical developments (Leišytė et al. 2018). The economic transition from the Soviet-centralized economy supported by the EU as well as NATO memberships resulted in significant economic growth coupled with rapid modernization. Growth accelerated from 2.6% in 2016 to 3.9% in 2017 (Official Statistics Portal 2018). Even though the country’s unemployment rate was only 7% in 2017, significant immigration and aging population are serious policy, economic, and demographic concerns. The transnational communication, funding available at the EU pre-accession stage through EU PHARE Programme and later the EU Structural Funds, and learning from foreign “best practices” coupled with path-dependent behavior of the bureaucratic apparatus of public administration have been influential factors in shaping the transition paths in various public sectors, including higher...
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