What Country is the Best for Professors?
On October 23rd 2012, the latest in a series of regular seminars ‘Topical research and development in education’ took place at the HSE Institute for Educational Studies. Martin Finkelstein, Professor at Seton Hall University (USA), spoke on ‘How the national context influences professors’ academic achievements and careers: a comparative analysis’.
Maria Yudkevich, Vice Rector of the HSE and Director of the HSE Center for Institutional Studies, introduced Martin Finkelstein as one of the leading US economists studying academic work environments and academic careers. He is one of the participants of the ‘Academic Salaries in 28 Countries across the World’ project, which the Higher School of Economics is also involved in.
The researchers tried to evaluate professors’ salaries and contracts in various academic systems around the world. Not only were official salaries taken into account, but also other benefits, including bonuses for medical aid, money earned from private classes, and bribes from prospective students. According to Maria Yudkevich, in terms of living standards for professors, Russia is second from bottom among the 28 countries researched.
However, during his seminar Martin Finkelstein focused not on data and the conclusions drawn from the study, but on the general conceptual framework of the project, which allowed his team to compare career trajectories in different academic systems. Different countries have different conditions for professors, as well as different academic disciplines and academic institutions. It is possible to compare national academic contexts in two ways: first, through career structure, which includes getting an academic position, career growth and further opportunities, and second, though working conditions and the structure of incentives offered by academic contracts.
The speaker outlined five key models for the organization and structure of academic work: European, North American, Latin American, Russian-Chinese, and hybrid.
At the end of his speech, Martin Finkelstein revealed some of the researchers’ plans for further study. In particular, they plan to carry out a large-scale study comparing the profiles of countries on the basis of selected indicators, to compare these profiles and to try and unite them in clusters. ‘A more precise classification of national contexts will allow us to create multi-variant models, on the basis of which we shall be able to evaluate the shaping influence of these contexts on academic work and professional academic sphere as a whole’, the speaker said.
Participants of the seminar included Evgeniy Knyazev, Director of the HSE Center for University Management, Olga Mashkina, Deputy Dean of the Pedagogical Department at the Lomonosov Moscow State Unviersity, and Tatiana Abanikna, Director of the Center for Applied Economic Studies at HSE Institute for Educational Studies (IES).
Summarizing the seminar, Irina Abankina, Director of the IES, emphasized the importance of efforts to create theoretical models of academic systems: ‘The researchers have managed to outline the key parameters differentiating one model of national academic context from another according to their internal organization’.
Alina Ivanova, specially for the HSE News Service
On May 20, the Days of the International Academy of Education commenced at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow. Experts from all over the world engaged in identifying global education policy trends will hold a series of meetings, master classes, seminars and open lectures. They will share their experience with Russian researchers, instructors and education policy makers over the course of three days.
The more a student engages with various activities on campus, the higher their odds of success post-graduation. According to a study by HSE researchers, not only academic but also research and social engagement, such as participation in student organisations and events, can be linked to the development of critical thinking skills which are essential for general wellbeing as well as career advancement.
The first meeting of IOE Expert Committee, which includes six international experts in education from five countries alongside three Russian experts, was held on October 19-20. The Committee gave an independent assessment of the Institute's activity and recommendations for finalizing its development strategy until 2024.
High school students’ membership in certain social media groups can be used to predict their academic performance, as demonstrated by Ivan Smirnov in his research. The analysis of school students’ membership in groups and communities was used to detect low-performing and high-performing students.
Researchers from the HSE Institute of Education surveyed teachers in vocational secondary schools in the Moscow Region, and compared the new advantages and disadvantages brought by the new conditions in their lives.
The report entitled ‘Twelve Solutions for New Education’, prepared by the Higher School of Economics and the Centre for Strategic Development, was presented at the XIX April International Academic Conference. Professors Martin Carnoy and Tomasso Agasisti, international experts on education and conference guests, have shared their views on the issues and initiatives highlighted in the report.
Professor Bjørn Stensaker, who teaches in the Department of Education at the University of Oslo, will be the plenary speaker at the 8th International Conference on Higher Education Research organized by the Russian Association of Higher Education Researchers in Moscow. The conference is due to take place October 19-21. In a recent interview with the HSE News Service, Professor Stensaker spoke about his latest research and the trends he sees in higher education, including the growing role of technology.
Students of engineering and economics, undergraduates of state universities, high performers, young people from wealthier families, and those working part-time while at university tend to expect higher salaries upon graduation.
Dr Elyssebeth Leigh, Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Education, University of Technology, Sydney – Australia will be visiting HSE Moscow to give lectures and take part in discussions at the HSE Institute of Education on May 15-19, 2017. She has been working for over 30 years as an educator and learning designer in workplaces and academic settings. As an experienced adult learning facilitator she has published four books and numerous articles and conference papers on learning and teaching. Much of this work concerns the use of simulation in learning and research.
Traditionally, postgraduate studies have been considered a school of teaching and research and a step towards an academic career. Today, however, many postgraduate students see their future outside academia and plan a corporate career instead. According to Ivan Gruzdev and Evgeniy Terentev, only 56% of postgraduate students plan a career within the academic environment.