About ministerial power and non-power. An explanatory study of the politics concerning the macro-level efficiency of the program supply in Flemish higher education, 1989-2019

One of the ongoing discussions in the Flemish higher education system concerns the macro-level efficiency of the program supply. Because of the egalitarian nature of Flemish higher education, the higher education institutions can only differentiate themselves via their program supply to attract more students and finances. Therefore many 'academic' (political) battles are fought over this. This PhD is a theory driven policy evaluation that investigates if the policies proposed by the Flemish ministers of education have any impact on the (educational) program supply of universities and university colleges. On the one hand the policy process of all the Flemish ministers and their policy proposals are explored and on the other hand are the effective changes in the program supply mapped in order to make a qualitative and quantitative judgement of the policy success of a minister of education. The theory employed is that of an evolved American theory of policy making (in the line of rational choice) and this is being applied for the first time on the (regional) allocation of higher educational provisions.

Researcher involved: Ton van Weel, Jr. (ton.vanweel@utwente.nl)

Promotor: Bas Denters (Department of Public Administration – University of Twente)

Supervisor: Harry de Boer (CHEPS – University of Twente)