The struggle to save and remake public higher education

Posted in Governance and administration on May 2nd, 2020 by steve

International“Public higher education is at serious risk. Universities premised on knowledge creation and dissemination for the public good are on shakier terrain than before. The higher education sector in South Africa and globally was already in a fragile condition – some would say a crisis – before the COVID-19 pandemic and its associated campus shutdowns began …” (more)

[Laura Czerniewicz, University World News, 30 April]

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Education system still counting cost of brain drain from flight of our graduates after crash

Posted in Governance and administration on October 3rd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Ireland is still feeling the after-effects of the graduate brain drain that robbed the country of youthful talent during the depths of the recession. Thousands of our brightest and best youngsters left these shores in pursuit of more viable job opportunities as the country languished in the fallout from the crash …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 3 October]

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High earners hit worst by austerity tax hikes, survey shows

Posted in Governance and administration on October 2nd, 2018 by steve

“A decade on from the dawn of the financial crisis, households across the State still bear the scars of the years of austerity that followed. Decisions to introduce the universal social charge (USC), a levy on public-service pensions and the local property tax, and to cut benefits such as children’s allowance and abolish the PRSI ceiling, continue to have a lingering effect on our disposable income …” (more)

[Fiona Reddan, Irish Times, 2 October]

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The Different Consequences of State Funding Cuts to Irish HEIs

Posted in Governance and administration on May 9th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“During the Celtic Tiger years, state investment in third level institutions in Ireland saw significant growth. This upward trend was maintained even within a short period after the collapse of the property bubble. It was the financial crisis of 2008 that dramatically overturned the pattern, with the national economy sharply declining …” (more)

[Research on Higher Education in Ireland, 9 May]

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To do how much more with how much less? A review of the QQI review

Posted in Governance and administration on April 4th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“Recently, the QQI (Quality and Qualifications Ireland) published a report entitled ‘Quality in an era of diminishing resources’, which was commissioned to provide a thematic overview of the commentary in institution-led quality review reports on the impact of the reduction in funding to institutions on the quality of learning and teaching in the Irish higher education system over the seven-year period from 2008-2015 …” (more)

[Research on Higher Education in Ireland, 4 April]

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Mercille and Murphy, ‘The Neoliberalization of Irish Higher Education under Austerity’

Posted in Governance and administration on February 17th, 2016 by steve

IrelandAbstract: This paper discusses the transformations that have taken place in Irish higher education under neoliberalism and, in particular, during the period of austerity since 2008. We adopt a critical political economic framework conceptualizing Ireland as a prototypical neoliberal state and maintain that the period of economic crisis since 2008 has witnessed a deepening of neoliberalism. We argue that restructuring in the education sector has been shaped by forces originating from the European Union, global institutions, as well as from the interests of Irish political and economic elites. We examine several aspects of the neoliberalization of the education sector, including privatization, commercialization, labor casualization and the erosion of work conditions. Empirically, the paper synthesizes and conceptualizes available data on neoliberalism and higher education in Ireland. Theoretically, it presents a useful framework to investigate similar cases in other countries.

Julien Mercille and Enda Murphy, ‘The Neoliberalization of Irish Higher Education under Austerity’, Critical Sociology October 8, 2015.

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Time to challenge the ‘myth of austerity’ – IFUT President, Rose Malone

Posted in Governance and administration on May 9th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“IFUT sees the funding of the universities as a fundamental issue of social justice and educational equity, Rose Malone stated in her Presidential Address to the Conference of the Irish Federation of University Teachers (IFUT), in Dublin …” (more)

[Irish Federation of University Teachers, 9 May]

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Trinity student president vows to fight college austerity

Posted in Governance and administration on February 16th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“Every morning when she walks across the historic cobbles of Trinity College, in the footsteps of Jonathan Swift, Oscar Wilde and Samuel Beckett, Lynn Ruane takes a moment to savour her surroundings …” (more)

[Nicola Anderson, Independent, 16 February]

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Howlin: No pay bonanza in store for public sector

Posted in Governance and administration on January 20th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“Public Expenditure Minister Brendan Howlin has signalled pay rises for public sector workers who took a hit during the recession – but warned there is ‘no bonanza in store’ …” (more)

[Daniel McConnell and Philip Ryan, Independent, 20 January]

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Free second level education in Ireland: a near escape

Posted in Governance and administration, Teaching on January 19th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“It takes a special kind of talent to propose a policy which is at once the political equivalent of a dirty bomb, economically retrograde, socially regressive, and fiscally meaningless …” (more)

[Brian M Lucey, 19 January]

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Minsters told public service pay cuts a ‘once-off’ measure

Posted in Governance and administration on December 17th, 2014 by steve

Ireland“The Department of Finance told ministers in 2009 they would have to tell public servants cuts to their core pay and allowances would be ‘once-off measures’ which would not be repeated …” (more)

[Martin Wall, Irish Times, 17 December]

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Public sector/private sector pay divide is ‘now at 50%’

Posted in Governance and administration on November 30th, 2014 by steve

Ireland“As the latest CSO data on earnings show, differences in trade union power, staff age and workforce composition help to explain a huge gap between public and private sector pay: average private sector weekly earnings now stand at €605 compared with public sector earnings of €905 …” (more)

[Marc Coleman, Independent, 30 November]

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Budget cuts ‘threaten pupils’ third-level hopes’

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on November 27th, 2014 by steve

Ireland“One of Ireland’s most successful ‘feeder’ schools has warned that repeated Government funding cuts are hampering pupils’ paths to third level …” (more)

[Ralph Riegel, Independent, 27 November]

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Business schools may close or merge, say industry insiders

Posted in Governance and administration on November 25th, 2014 by steve

International“The lion’s share of management academics believe that some business schools will fail and others need to merge in order to survive, as online technology disrupts the industry …” (more)

[Della Bradshaw,, 25 November]

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Brendan Howlin to begin unwinding legislation on pay cuts

Posted in Governance and administration on October 30th, 2014 by steve

Ireland“The first step in unwinding the emergency legislation that underpinned pay cuts across the public service at the height of the financial crisis has been taken by the Government. Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin yesterday secured the agreement of his Cabinet colleagues to delete a key section of the Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Act 2009 …” (more)

[Stephen Collins, Irish Times, 30 October]

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Times Higher Education analysis of impact of austerity on European universities

Posted in Governance and administration on October 23rd, 2014 by steve

EU“A Times Higher Education analysis of funding and enrollment levels. Statistics cover period from 2008‑09 to 2013‑14 unless stated, and are based on data from the European University Association (EUA) …” (more)

[Jack Grove, insidehighered, 23 October]

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Over 1,000 extra teachers needed to reduce pupil-teacher ratios at second-level

Posted in Teaching on October 18th, 2014 by steve

Ireland“More than 1,000 additional second-level classroom teacher posts are needed next year to reduce the pupil-teacher ratio to pre-austerity levels, according to figures from second-level teachers’ unions …” (more)

[Leanna Byrne, Business Post, 17 October]

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Trinity’s Contingent at the USI Rally Wasn’t Remarkable, But it is a Reboot That’s Worth Commending

Posted in Governance and administration on October 13th, 2014 by steve

Ireland“The Union of Students in Ireland’s Rally for Education, held last Wednesday in Dublin, should be commended. While the feeling is that estimates of 6,000 people turning out may be overblown, certainly several thousand people made their way from the Garden of Remembrance …” (more)

[, 13 October]

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Independents call for education and health reform

Posted in Governance and administration on September 20th, 2014 by steve

“A group of Independent TDs have called for increased spending on Health and Education. The appeal is to repair, what they describe as, the damage caused by years of austerity …” (more)

[RTÉ News, 20 September]

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Irish Federation of University Teachers makes the case for state funding

Posted in Governance and administration on September 20th, 2014 by steve

“The Irish Federation of University Teachers (IFUT) has called for increased investment in higher education as a way to drive economic growth …” (more)

[Liam Hunt, Trinity News, 19 September]

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