History of higher education: student movements, human capital and expert culture.

15.11.2016 00:02

The second half of the 20thcentury was a period of significant expansion of secondary and tertiary education throughout the world. The number of students grew exponentially, the institutional landscape of higher education diversified, the share of university graduates on the labor market became more significant than ever before, and their impact on the overall economic performance of various societies also increased. Europe played a significant part in this global success story. On both sides of the Iron Curtain, there was a strong relationship between the dynamics of economic development and the expansion of higher education. Nevertheless, systemic framework conditions mattered. In socialist command-systems higher education was part of centralized planning and, in principle, it was shaped to fit the requirements of the economy. In the more liberal systems prevailing in Western Europe, the connection between higher education and the economy was less one-sided, as the universities had more say in the configuration of professionalization patterns.