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Policy reform and academic drift: Research mission and institutional legitimacy in the development of the Swedish higher education system 1977-2012

Holmberg, Daniel LU and Hallonsten, Olof LU (2015) In European Journal of Higher Education 5(2). p.181-196
Abstract
Twentieth-century massification of higher education and academic research led to mission diversification and structural diversification of national higher education systems (HESs), but also a tendency of non-university colleges to seek to develop into full-scale universities by the emulation of practices of established academic organizations, a tendency that has been called academic drift. The drift as such can have multiple causes, and in this article, we relate academic drift to the concepts of institutional logics and isomorphism from neoinstitutional organization theory, delineating policy-making, norm shifts and organizational action in response to uncertainty as three component processes of academic drift. Using the case of the... (More)
Twentieth-century massification of higher education and academic research led to mission diversification and structural diversification of national higher education systems (HESs), but also a tendency of non-university colleges to seek to develop into full-scale universities by the emulation of practices of established academic organizations, a tendency that has been called academic drift. The drift as such can have multiple causes, and in this article, we relate academic drift to the concepts of institutional logics and isomorphism from neoinstitutional organization theory, delineating policy-making, norm shifts and organizational action in response to uncertainty as three component processes of academic drift. Using the case of the organizational field of the Swedish HES and its recent 35-year history, we draw both empirical and theoretical conclusions, and demonstrate the weight of the research mission in the building of institutional legitimacy for university colleges. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
academic drift, legitimacy, research mission, institutional logics, higher education systems, Sweden
in
European Journal of Higher Education
volume
5
issue
2
pages
181 - 196
publisher
Taylor & Francis
ISSN
2156-8235
DOI
10.1080/21568235.2014.997263
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
79d742e4-94d5-4b21-b4de-583889b0efa8 (old id 5337173)
date added to LUP
2015-04-29 11:29:59
date last changed
2016-04-15 15:51:37
@article{79d742e4-94d5-4b21-b4de-583889b0efa8,
  abstract     = {Twentieth-century massification of higher education and academic research led to mission diversification and structural diversification of national higher education systems (HESs), but also a tendency of non-university colleges to seek to develop into full-scale universities by the emulation of practices of established academic organizations, a tendency that has been called academic drift. The drift as such can have multiple causes, and in this article, we relate academic drift to the concepts of institutional logics and isomorphism from neoinstitutional organization theory, delineating policy-making, norm shifts and organizational action in response to uncertainty as three component processes of academic drift. Using the case of the organizational field of the Swedish HES and its recent 35-year history, we draw both empirical and theoretical conclusions, and demonstrate the weight of the research mission in the building of institutional legitimacy for university colleges.},
  author       = {Holmberg, Daniel and Hallonsten, Olof},
  issn         = {2156-8235},
  keyword      = {academic drift,legitimacy,research mission,institutional logics,higher education systems,Sweden},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {181--196},
  publisher    = {Taylor & Francis},
  series       = {European Journal of Higher Education},
  title        = {Policy reform and academic drift: Research mission and institutional legitimacy in the development of the Swedish higher education system 1977-2012},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/21568235.2014.997263},
  volume       = {5},
  year         = {2015},
}