22 SES 07 D, Responding to Theoretical, Analytical and Methodological Challenges in Higher Education Research- Alternative Approaches
The contribution will present an alternative approach to research on higher education market and industry creation that aims to go beyond simple institutional or national policy and organisational shifts. The first turn is to position higher education as a (1) broad and (2) variegated sector. It is (1) broad in the sense that it consists of higher education institutions, governments and other authorities, stakeholders, NGOs, global actors, private (not for-)profit companies, individuals and so on. It is (2) variegated in the sense that all these actors perform different activities, provide different services, are engaged in different relations, networks, power constellations and similar. The second turn is to closely connect the sector with the concept of a global value chain as an analytical approach. This concept is useful for identifying new sites of capital accumulation, actors, their relations and processes at work. Working with critical theory the traditional approaches to value chain analyses will be adapted by engaging with relational work and governance issues. The aim is to search for the underlying processes, who are they working for, why and with what consequences, how are they established, what is the political work behind it and so on.
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