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Reforming higher education in Portugal in times of uncertainty: The importance of illities, as non-functional requirements

Manuel Heitor and Hugo Horta

Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 2016, vol. 113, issue PB, 146-156

Abstract: This article shows that higher education reforms can create opportunities for higher education institutions (HEIs) to thrive under a legal umbrella that may reinforce their legitimacy, mandate, and contribution for societal development. This requires a profound consideration of illities affecting HEIs, including but not limited to affordability, accessibility, quality, capacity, adaptability and autonomy. The analysis, based on the Portuguese reform of higher education in the period 2006–2010, allows the identification of different policy implications in distinct orthogonal dimensions. Accessibility and affordability are found to be required to broaden the social basis of the “knowledge pyramid”, while capacity and quality require policies oriented to pull-up the top of that pyramid. The need to foster effective institutional autonomy and integrity of modern higher education institutions is reinforced in a context where innovation must be considered together with competence building and advanced training of people to work in increasingly globalized economies and labour markets.

Keywords: Illities; Higher education reform; Autonomy; Science policy; Higher education policy; Portugal (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016
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Handle: RePEc:eee:tefoso:v:113:y:2016:i:pb:p:146-156