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Article

Growth or stagnation? Historical dynamics of the growth patterns of Dorpat University (1803–1884)

Kostina T. V., Kouprianov A. V.

The patterns of growth of the body of professors and instructors of the university of Dorpat from 1803 through 1884 is compared to that of the universities of Kazan and St. Petersburg. It is shown that the Dorpat university, once taking the leading position within the imperial University system, lagged behind other universities by the mid-1880s. This lag was caused by decreasing, as compared to the other universities, growth rates of the faculty at Dorpat. An analysis of the legislation and of the growth patterns by different categories of the faculty allows to speculate on two groups of reasons of this growth anomaly. First, the ministerial policy has seemingly put limitations on the growth of salaried faculty at Dorpat. Second, the patterns of growth rates of Privat-docenten suggest that there were considerable differences in their status across different universities. While at Kazan and St. Petesrburg, one may observe an explosive growth of the numbers of the Privat-docenten after they had been introduced in the 1860s, at Dorpat, the Privat-docenten failed not only to outnumber the salaried faculty, but even to comprise a more or less considerable fraction of the body of professors and instructors, even though they were present from as early as 1805. The reasons for this difference, it seems, are to be sought in the peculiarities of local academic cultures.