EARLIER THIS YEAR, the management method called New Public Management (NPM) in Swedish national health care was investigated by journalist Maciej Zaremba and published in a series of articles in the daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter. His description of NPM and its consequences to both patients and professionals was very critical. Readers, hospital staff and politicians reacted strongly to the revealing articles and the question was raised if this really is the right way to run our tax-funded national health care. However, NPM is not confined only to the health care sector.
This new paradigm has gradually been applied to the academic world; today market principles are forced on universities, threatening the core principle of Enlightenment. The free pursuit of knowledge is replaced by ideological opportunism and economic expedience. There is now a fear among scholars that these reforms in the managerial and administrative structures will erode European higher education. “Transformation in Research, Higher Education and the Academic Market” and “Nordic Lights” are two books on this subject, see pp 12 and 17.
Visby, September 2013
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