On the Road to Functional Differentiation in a Context of Multifaceted Relevance
Tuesday, June 26, 2012
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
768 Evans Hall
Speaker/Performer: Christian Leder
Christian will explain that new expectations on teaching and research challenge the traditional understanding not only of higher education and the university in Switzerland, but also of scientific research, scholarship and public governance. He will suggest that growing dependence on research based instruction, scientific expertise and higher qualifications does call for new relationships, i.e. new forms of shared control over knowledge, between universities and fields of application. But who has the authority to articulate and coordinate these expectations: the state, scholarly networks, intermediary boards or the market? In addition to defining mission differentiation, which works similarly to the California Master-Plan, current policies in Switzerland increase both exposure to market forces, e.g. the dependence on third-party funds, and the institutions autonomy to strengthen its capacity for self-governed change, or adaption. However, this moderate deregulation is accompanied by a search for new instruments to increase accountability and shape relationships between universities and its constituencies. Such new instruments are accreditation, professional licensing and further means to define purposes and measure outcomes at different levels of system organization. Given these interrelations, the best way to understand the different roles of academic work is within an analytical framework that looks not only at autonomy but also at the tension between academic self-control and dependence on resources from entities beyond the campus. This is why, during his stay at the CSHE, Christian is looking at the diversity of institutional commitments that have evolved in the American higher education system together with diverse ways to acquire funding and legitimacy. In his empirical research, he is exploring how curriculum development and the definition of research questions in university professional schools are shaped by professional accreditation and funding.