Politicians and bureaucrats in a Humboldt type system: the case of Italy
Roberto Moscati et al, University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy
Single presentation - 30 Minutes
The ever-increasing demands coming from society have brought with them a series of problems in the reorganization both in higher-education systems and individual seats in almost all European countries. In the systems of continental Europe most deeply affected by the Humboldt model, where the central state exercises control over education, university autonomy is limited by a series of rules and regulations. Autonomy is guided, well under control. This process of change concerns both the system in general and the internal organization of the individual universities.
The present paper examines the case of Italy, which clearly belongs to the Humboldt model. Its principal characteristics are (1) at system level, which reveals the lack of a medium to long range strategy, the multiplication of behaviour norms especially in the growth of a very detailed and formal type of evaluation; (ii) at single university level, where the ever-growing administrative participation in the governance managing both old tasks and new ones attributed by the controlled autonomy. Notable, too, academia’s difficulty in accepting the new power of the administration and the processes of evaluation perceived as limiting autonomy.
On both levels the relationship between political and bureaucratic elements is fraught with contrasts, threatening dysfunctionality.