Global Challenges and Trends of University Governance Structures

Book Title: 
University Governance and Academic Leadership in the EU and China
Publication Year: 
IGI Global

This chapter tries to identify the different trends in university governance and their underlying causes. Although it focuses on university trends in Europe, it makes reference to global trends and causes, such as digitalization, inter-connectivity of our societies, and growing international competition. In sum, the chapter argues that the digital evolution has led both to a changed approach to teaching as well as to growing global competition in the race to obtain the best talent. This, in combination with a generation that has a growing access to higher education and that thrives on “instant knowledge-satisfaction,” has led to university governance changes that better fit current needs. Government-led austerity programs have further accelerated these changes, as universities seek to optimize their financing whilst, at the same time, striving to move up the international rankings. University governance trends include a professionalization of management, the creation of international excellence networks, and the establishment of interdisciplinary but specialized schools.