The Effects of Reform on the Performance of Higher Education Institutions
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to analyze the outcomes of the financial optimization process launched by the recent reforms in the Russian higher education sector and its impact on access to higher education, its quality and competitiveness within the sector. The study of the economic performance of higher educational institutions includes complex analysis of financial and educational components of their structural dynamics and their impact on their development strategy.
Design/methodology/approach – The methods used in the study of the segmentation of the higher education sector involve a combination of theoretical developments in economics and the modeling of the economic behavior of universities on the market for educational services, procedures for the evaluation of transaction costs in the markets with asymmetric information and recent conceptions of the interrelation of factors affecting quality and accessibility of higher education.
Findings – In this paper, the economic potential of Russian universities is considered, making use of a segmentation of the higher education sector, based on sampling of state and municipal higher education institutions from different industry groups, depending on their development strategy under changing social and economic conditions. The research data for 2006-2009 help to define five clusters of the higher educational establishments with different approaches towards public funding and different strategies.
Originality/value – Based on the research data, the paper evaluates the current situation in the Russian higher education sector and some skewed structures of the reforms and outlines some policy implications.