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Doctoral Education’s Reform in Switzerland and Norway

A Public Management Analysis

Lukas Baschung

Since the beginning of the 21 st century, doctoral education has gained an increasingly important place on the reform agenda of higher education institutions and also at national and European policy levels. By paying particular attention to the characteristics and role of recently emerged Doctoral and Research Schools, this book examines on a broad empirical basis what this reform consists of in two small but scientifically and economically successful countries – Switzerland and Norway. This reform also raises the question to what extent power shifts take place regarding the doctoral process. Thus, does the «Thesis director» lose his or her power at the expense of other actors? Observed shifts are characterised through components of varying Public Management Narratives. In order to consider existing variety, case studies have been chosen on the basis of four variables – type of national political system, size and type of higher education institution and type of scientific discipline. This methodological framework allows not only illustrating variation in the reform process and its causes but also the development of a new University Governance Scheme.


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Acknowledgements V


Acknowledgements I am indebted to many people who have been involved in different ways in my doctoral thesis. From a scientific view, I am particularly grateful to all members of the “Steering of University-project” (SUN). Under the lead of Catherine Paradeise, senior and junior researchers from six European countries regularly met to discuss and present the overall SUN-project and, in particular, the doctoral students’ individual doctoral researches. Such scientific exchange activities went on even after the SUN-project’s formal end. I appreciate this engagement a lot and could benefit in a significant way from it. A second scientific platform which contributed a lot to the progress of my thesis consists in the Euredocs conferences. Explicitly conceptualised for doctoral students and young researchers who work in the field of higher education studies, this European forum is extremely precious because it allows to get inputs from European leaders of the field and doctoral students from other countries. Thirdly, I also thank all my colleagues from the Observatoire Science, Politique et Société at University of Lausanne, in particular Gaële Goastellec, Martin Benninghoff and my thesis director, Jean- Philippe Leresche, who were always at disposal when I asked for some advice. The success of qualitative research projects always heavily depends on the good will of the interviewees. Therefore, I thank all 100 interviewees who, in spite of their mostly overloaded agendas, spent some of their precious time to answer my questions. I hope that the results of this project somehow constitutes a service...

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