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2009 International Seminar of Higher Educational Finance Held in PKU

Peking University, Beijing, Nov. 16, 2009:“2009 International Seminar of Higher Educational Finance” & workshop of “Higher Education under Global Knowledge Economy” project sponsored by  CIEFR (China Institute for Educational Finance Research, Peking University) was held on Nov.7 — 8. This is the third round workshop of the project “Higher Education under Global Knowledge Economy”. Previous 2 rounds of the workshop were held in India and Russia after the project started on Jan. 2008.

 

Prof. Min Weifang, vice president of PKU, addressed the meeting. Scholars including Mr. Bernard Hugonnier, Deputy Director of the Directorate for Education in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Dr. Kin Bing Wu, Chief education specialist of the World Bank’s Department of Human Development of East Asia and Pacific Region, Prof. Tan Songhua from National Center For Education Development Research (NCEDR) and Mr. Han Min, deputy director of NCEDR, Prof. Yuan Liansheng from School of Economics and Business Administration of Beijing Normal University, Prof. Yang Dongping from Education Science Institute of Beijing Institute of Technology, and Prof. Yan Fengqiao, Deputy Director of Education Institute of Peking University, made comments to the speeches.

 

The seminar mainly focused on the following three topics about the higher education in BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, and China): fairness and efficiency, organizational pattern and financial status, and opportunities and challenges facing science and engineering program.

 

Prof. Wang Rong briefly introduced the main content of the 7 reports submitted by Chinese research group, pointing out several notable trends. The first one is that the top universities in China are sliding down while the second level universities are going up. For example, universities affiliated to Ministry of Education (MOE) opened 60 new independent institutes, in which the number of students is about 22% of the total number of the undergraduate students in these universities. From 2003 to 2006, the proportion of the number of graduates for master program is decreased from 64% to 55% in the universities affiliated to MOE. The second trend is that new requirements emerged after the popularization of the higher education. According to a survey among students from graduating class of high schools, 22% of the students whose scores reached the line of second level universities in the National College Entrance Exam decided to quit and prepared for the next try while only 52% of the students whose score reached score line of third level universities in the National College Entrance Exam decided to enter college. She explained the trends through new theories about human capital.

 

Prof. Martin Carnoy analyzed the different characteristics on the high education expansion in BRIC and their social, political and economic backgrounds. He thinks that governments of China and Russia mainly focused on building up “the world top class universities” while governments of Brazil and India paid attention to the quality of their top universities. The funds of public universities in Brazil come mostly from the public finance. The proportion of tuition fee in the funding of Chinese universities increased constantly. Universities in Russia started accepting students at their own expense. Government of India permitted the rapid expansion of the private universities. He pointed out that the purpose of this international project is to reveal the common patterns and different trends in higher education in these countries and to find the causes in the different trends in BRIC. In BRIC, higher education used to be supported by public finance, and it seemed to be a type of pure public commodity. However, BRIC are designing financial system for sharing the costs. The expansion of college admission guided by this financial system is different from the expansion aiming at promoting the productivity and fairness, just as the college expansion in the US, Japan, and Europe during the late 20’s century.

 

Prof. Isak Froumin and Prof. Jandhyala Tilak gave presentations on higher education of engineering in Russia and India respectively. Researchers from CIEFR reported their research about choosing a university, opportunities for university, and costs and structure of universities.

 


Background

 

“Higher Education under Global Knowledge Economy” is a large international cooperation project. This project was started and organized by Prof.  Martin Carnoy from Education Institute of Stanford University. The kernel members of this project are Prof. Isak Froumin from the higher economic institute of the National University of Russia, Jandhyala Tilak from National University of Educational Planning and Administration of India, and Prof. Wang Rong from CIEFR (China Institute for Educational Finance Research, Peking University).

 

As the four developing countries with the most population in the world, BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) may become the most important powers in the world economy in the next 40 years. There are many factors during the transfer from the powerful economic entity based on the large population and cheap labor force or natural resources to the developed economy based on the knowledge industry and service industry. One of these factors is the development of the national education system, especially higher education system. The purpose of this project is to find the solution for higher education system in BRIC to face the challenge from the global knowledge economy.

 

Translated by: Qi Yixiao

Edited by: Xiang Yunke

Source: PKU News(Chinese)