Higher Education Policy in Turkey under Globalization

Bayırbağ M. K.

in: Public Policymaking in a Globalized World: Revised Edition, Robin J. Lewis, Editor, Routledge, London/New York , New-York, pp.365-401, 2018

  • Publication Type: Book Chapter / Chapter Research Book
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Publisher: Routledge, London/New York 
  • City: New-York
  • Page Numbers: pp.365-401
  • Editors: Robin J. Lewis, Editor
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


This paper concentrates on the tensions shaping the higher education policy (HEP) in Turkey during the 2000s. It is argued that the higher education scenario in Turkey has been characterized by four major tensions between related policy goals, all of which stem from globalization. These conflicting goals, it is further argued, produce a set of policy impasses that block the way to a much needed, comprehensive HE reform in Turkey. The impasses include the following: a) Promotion of social justice (via increasing public access to university education) vs promotion of competition among higher education institutions; b) Developing the research environment vs strengthening managerial control over higher education institutions; c) Increasing emphasis on the public service role of universities (mass education) vs de-politicization of the higher education institutions; d) The discourse on protection and promotion of diversity (especially in a fragmented country like Turkey) vs standardization of service provision (procedures) and product quality.