Research Handbook on Quality, Performance and Accountability in Higher Education
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Research Handbook on Quality, Performance and Accountability in Higher Education

Edited by Ellen Hazelkorn, Hamish Coates and Alexander C. McCormick

As higher education becomes a key determinant for economic competitiveness, institutions face increasing pressure to demonstrate their fitness to meet the needs of society and individuals. Blending innovative research with richly contextualised examples this unique Research Handbook provides authoritative insights from around the globe on how best to understand, assess and improve quality, performance and accountability in higher education.
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Chapter 37: Governance tools to increase quality and diversity in higher education: emerging trends in Norway

Ole-Jacob Skodvin and Stein Erik Lid


This chapter discusses how the primary governance tools – the ongoing reorganization of the Higher Education sector in Norway and development of new definitions of quality in education – influence the overarching goals of increasing quality and diversity in the sector. Furthermore, it elaborates on why it is so difficult for the authorities to reach their goal of a sufficiently diversified HE sector. What kind of instruments and mechanisms do the government use to govern the HE sector, and how do these instruments influence the development of quality and diversification? We argue that several of these instruments and mechanisms may have unintended consequences such as increased homogenization at both institutional and study program level. Finally, we discuss to what degree the current reorganization of the Norwegian HE sector is the right medicine to increase the quality and diversity.

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