The Mission Impossible of the European University: Institutional Confusion and Institutional Diversity

Jürgen Enders, Harry F. de Boer

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


    The outline for this book stresses the importance of the institutional dynamics of the European university and points to its current state of institutional confusion and search for identity. In fact, attempts to delineate some common elements of the multiple transformations of the university point to the unfolding of a most interesting paradox (Krücken et al. 2007). The European university is undeniably a success story. Research and teaching have expanded enormously; the fields of research and scholarship have multiplied and provide potential links to all other sub-systems in modern society (Frank and Meyer 2007). While there are signs of stagnation there are also growing expectations with regard to the contribution of higher education and research to the ‘European knowledge society’. Modern societies and their sub-systems all seek new innovations and expect the universities to deliver these goods. In parallel with its success, deepening criticism of the European university is coming more and more to the fore – on the national level as well as on the European level.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationEuropean Integration and the Governance of Higher Education and Research
    EditorsAlberto Amaral, Guy Neave, Christine Musselin, Peter Maassen
    Place of PublicationDordrecht
    Number of pages309
    ISBN (Electronic)978-1-4020-9505-4
    ISBN (Print)978-1-4020-9504-7
    Publication statusPublished - 2009

    Publication series

    NameHigher Education Dynamics
    ISSN (Print)1571-0378


    • METIS-260619
    • High Education
    • High Education System
    • Knowledge Society
    • Student Mobility
    • High Education Policy

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