Governmental policies and organisational change in higher education

Åse Gornitzka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

114 Citations (Scopus)
64 Downloads (Pure)


In this article a theoretical framework designed for a comparative research project on organisational change in higher education is presented. In the project the main focus is on how organisational change in universities and colleges is affected by governmental policies and programmes. The framework is based upon two major theoretical perspectives, resource dependency and neo-institutionalism. It is argued that for examining changes in universities and colleges both the relationship between these organisations and the government, as well as their internal dynamics are of importance. In addition to integrating the two main theoretical perspectives in the project also attempts to do justice to the complexities of the concept of (governmental) steering by attempting to incorporate general models on the role of the state. The article suggests that these models offer a meaningful insight into how and why governmental steering approaches have been changed over time.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-31
Number of pages26
JournalHigher education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1999


  • High education
  • General model
  • Theoretical perspective
  • Organisational change
  • Internal dynamic


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