Аннотация. В последние десятилетия, правительства по всему миру приняли конкретные меры для повышения статуса своих университетов. Мирового класса университеты требуют значительных финансовых и человеческих ресурсов для обеспечения качественного образования и проведения серьезных исследований. Так российские университеты, призывая преподавателей увеличить научные публикации, вначале должны решить несколько вопросов, включая условия труда и заработной платы. Постоянные усилия и достаточные ресурсы, необходимые условия для реализации инициатив преподавателей.
Ключевые слова: высшее образование, преподаватель вуза.
In the past two decades, many governments around the world have adopted excellence initiatives to create world-class universities. According to Salmi (2009), excellence at a world-class level has become one of the main objectives for higher education systems and institutions across the globe. With the growing sector of public and private higher education, quality concerns and global ranking prompted some governments to concentrate their resources on a few elite research universities. Experts acknowledge that research universities are at the pinnacle of higher education and are central to economic and scientific development of nations around the world (Altbach, 2013; Altbach & Salmi, 2011).
Emerging and developing economies such as the BRICS countries are pushing to achieve world-class status by focusing on a small number of elite institutions while spending less on mass institutions usually of lower quality. For example, Russia and China now allocate significate resources to key universities which are expected to compete for international recognition. While the quality of higher education is essential to a country’s social and economic well-being, it also affects the status of that higher education system at the international level (UNESCO, 2005). Countries seeking to establish world-class universities often emulate American research universities which currently lead most university ranking tables and are considered an informal global model for those countries who want to compete globally. In addition to this, governments are increasingly adopting policy blueprints, management structures, and institutional practices created in different political and economic settings while giving little consideration to their local application.
According to Salmi (2009), world-class universities are characterized by three complementary sets of factors. First of all, the top universities are characterized by a high concentration of talent including faculty and students. Second, they need abundant resources such as public funding and research funding to offer a rich learning environment and to conduct advanced research. Finally, they require favorable governance including a supportive regulatory framework, autonomy and academic freedom that encourage strategic vision, innovation, and flexibility and enable them to make decisions and to manage resources without being encumbered by bureaucracy (p. 7-9).
While stressing the importance of alignment of all these factors in establishing world-class universities, researchers (e.g., Salmi & Froumin, 2013; Salmi, 2009; Gounko, Panina & Zalutskaya, forthcoming) argue that one of the main mistakes of most initiatives to build world-class universities is an overemphasis on research productivity. Such a narrow focus on increasing academic publications (which is explained by their importance in global university rankings) can be detrimental to teaching, innovation and attractiveness of a university. While most universities in Russia require university professors to increase the volume of academic publications, they often do not provide necessary resources including office and research facilities and adequate salaries. In fact, despite considerable government spending on federal and research universities, university funding in Russia is well below that of Western universities. Although Russian universities report increases in professors’ earnings, the overall situation with academic salaries has not changed significantly. A recent study of monthly average salaries of public higher education faculty by Altbach, Reisberg, Yudkevich, Androushchak, and Pacheco (2012) shows that the average top salary in PPP (Purchasing Power Parity) US dollars in Russia is US$ 910, which is considerably lower compared to the average top salaries of US$ 9,485 paid in Canada.
The decline in income and their quality of living forces academics to take additional teaching loads, which are already higher compared to those in Western research universities where professors have modest teaching responsibilities and enough time to undertake and publish research. Altbach and Salmi (2011) pointed out that where teaching loads are relatively high, as is the case in many developing countries, research commitment and productivity tend to be relatively low.
As Russian universities are implementing excellence initiatives, they clearly need abundant resources to create favorable working and learning conditions and to work towards establishing a strong culture of excellence. This is the result of incremental progress and requires sustained efforts over a long period of time, decades and sometimes centuries (Salmi, 2013).
- Altbach, P. G., Reisberg, L., Yudkevich, M., Androushchak, G., & Pacheco, I. (Eds). (2012). Paying the professoriate: A global comparison of compensation and contracts. New York: Routledge. United States (pp. 1-27).New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
- Altbach, P. (2013). The prospects for the BRICs: The new academic superpowers? In P. G. Altbach, G. Androuscshyak, Ya. Kuzminov, M. Yudkevich & L. Reisberg (Eds.) The Global Future of Higher Education and the Academic Profession. The BRICs and the United States (pp. 1-27).New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
- Altbach, P. G. & Salmi, J. (Eds.). (2011). The road to academic excellence. The making of world-class research universities. Washington, D.C.: the World Bank.
- Gounko, T., Panina, S., & Zalutskaya, S. (forthcoming). Establishing World-Class Universities in Russia: Case study of a federal university. In L. Shultz and M. Viczko (Eds.), Assembling the Higher Education Institution: Considerations of Democracy, Social Justice and Leadership. Palgrave MacMillan.
- Salmi, J. (2009). The challenge of establishing World-Class Universities. Washington, D.C.: the World Bank.
- Salmi, J. (2013, January 13). The race for excellence – A marathon not a sprint. University World News, 254. Retrieved from http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20130108161422529
- Salmi, J. & Froumin, I. (2013). Excellence initiatives to establish World-Class Universities: Evaluation of Recent Experiences. Educational Studies, 1, 25-68.
Challenges of Creating World-Class Universities in Russia
Abstract: In recent decades, governments around the world adopted specific policies to raise the status of their universities. World-class universities require considerable financial and human resources to provide quality education and produce outstanding research. As Russian universities urge professors to increase research publications, they need to address several issues including working conditions and salaries. Sustained efforts and abundant resources are necessary conditions for implementing excellence initiatives.