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NBER digest: 研究型大学的治理与绩效

2009年05月28日 发表评论 Go to comments

【按】美国国家经济研究局(NBER)最新一期的文摘(NBER digest)介绍了一篇有关研究型大学的治理与绩效的工作论文。基本的结论是研究型大学的自主权越大,面临的外部竞争越激烈,则其绩效越好。顺便想起了余世存在《常言道》『直言』篇中的一段话:『蔡元培坦陈:教育是要个性与群性平均发达的。政党是要制造一种特别的群性,抹杀个性。例如,鼓励人民亲善某国,仇视某国;或用甲民族的文化,去同化乙民族。今日的政党,往往有此等政策,若参与教育,便是大害。教育是求远效的,政党的政策是求近功的。……若把教育权也交与政党,两党更迭的时候,教育方针也要跟着改变,教育就没有成效了。所以,教育事业不可不超然于各派政党之外。』。

原文的摘要如下:

We investigate how university governance affects research output, measured by patenting and international university research rankings. For both European and U.S. universities, we generate several measures of autonomy, governance, and competition for research funding. We show that university autonomy and competition are positively correlated with university output, both among European countries and among U.S. public universities. We then identity a (political) source of exogenous shocks to funding of U.S. universities. We demonstrate that, when a state’s universities receive a positive funding shock, they produce more patents if they are more autonomous and face more competition from private research universities. Finally, we show that during periods when merit-based competitions for federal research funding have been most prominent, universities produce more patents when they receive an exogenous funding shock, suggesting that routine participation in such competitions hones research skill.

下面是由Linda Gorman写的文摘。顺便说一下,对于不知道如何写文献summary的同学,多学习两篇NBER digest中的文摘,一定会有收获。

The Governance and Performance of Research Universities

Research productivity is highest for schools in states that allow more autonomy.

Highly productive universities both control their own destinies and face stiff external competition, according to a recent NBER Working Paper.

In The Governance and Performance of Research Universities: Evidence from Europe and the U.S. (NBER Working Paper No. 14851), authorsPhilippe Aghion, Mathias Dewatripont, Caroline M. Hoxby, Andreu Mas-Colell, and André Sapir construct an index of research productivity that is based on the Shanghai Ranking of World Universities, which includes measures of patents, the number of alumni who have won Nobel Prizes in science, publications appearing in citation indices, or numbers of highly cited researchers. Combining the Shanghai Ranking — which awards 500 points to the best university — with the results from a survey of governance policies at 196 European universities, the authors find that “the average Shanghai ranking for a European university that must get its budget approved by the government is just above 200 while the average ranking for a European university that does not need budget approval is 316. In general, each percentage of a university’s budget that comes from core government funds reduces its rank by 3.2 points.”

European universities required to pay the same amount to all faculty members with the same seniority and rank have an average Shanghai ranking of 213. Universities free to pay faculty as they see fit have an average ranking of 322. Universities free to select undergraduate students as they see fit have a Shanghai ranking 156 points higher than those in which the government determines who will attend. Competition also improves research quality. Each percentage of a university’s budget that comes from competitive research grants increases its ranking by 6.5 points.

The NBER researchers find that in Sweden and the United Kingdom universities with high autonomy have high Shanghai ranking scores, while in Spain and the United Kingdom universities with low autonomy have low rankings. The results for state universities in the United States are similar. Research productivity is highest for schools in states that allow more autonomy, such as independent purchasing systems, no state approval of the university budget, and complete control of personnel hiring and pay. States with high rankings and high autonomy include Washington, Colorado, California, Wisconsin, and Michigan. States with low rankings and low autonomy include Arkansas, South Carolina, Kansas, and Louisiana.

Perhaps autonomous universities respond to competition for research funds by developing more productive, inventive, or efficient research programs. The authors seek to show how autonomy and competition affect research productivity by exploiting survey data on the wide variations in those variables among colleges in the U.S. states. Their results confirm that competition increases research productivity. In New Jersey, a highly competitive environment, an increase in exogenous research university expenditure per person increases patenting by residents of that state. In Arkansas, New Mexico, and Maine, where autonomy is low and competition is lackluster, additional spending on research universities may be wasted and may even reduce over-all patenting. Private research universities, which by definition have more autonomy, produce the most patents for any exogenous spending increase. Additional exogenous spending on 2-year colleges generally added little to research productivity during their sample period, and, in some states, may have reduced it.

– Linda Gorman

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  1. Yao
    2009年05月28日 @ 10:24 pm

    ur blog becomes more n more professional :)happy Duanwu Festival!Hope u had a great one.

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