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Voldemar Tomusk

Higher Education, Social Change and Policy

Doi number:10.14413/HERJ.2016.02.06

Keywords: university, social change, cooling-out function, public policy, social institutions, hermeneutic contradiction

Higher education has been often seen as an essential contributor to a positive social change and as such attracts the attention from donor agencies as well as charitable foundations, such as for example Open Society Foundations. However, as higher education appears by its very design as a predominantly conservative institution with significant interests of its own to defend, in order to survive and perpetuate itself, its track record initiating and sustaining social change through education, research and policy studies remains at its best mixed. This paper takes a critical look at higher education and the primary mission granted to it by the nation state to stabilize the reality, in search for possible entries to contribute to social change and the conditions under which this could take place. The author argues that left alone, university is likely to frustrate many expectations society might have for the goods to emerge from it.


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DOI: 10.14413/HERJ.2016.02.06

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