Daniel Houben (RWTH Aachen, Germany)
European universities and higher education have undergone some tremendous changes during the last two decades. Apart from the Bologna-Process, especially the ideas of entrepreneurial universities and ranking-based funding provoked a shift to more competition and market-based logics within the field of research and education. These developments prove to be a major source for strategic re-organization of universities all over Europe. Hence, strategic collaborations and inter-university networks have become a familiar phenomenon for most scientists. Yet, regarding universities social network analysis is mostly concerned with scientific research and citation networks, whereas universities as corporate actors and their relations to other organizations play a marginal role at best.
The aim of the session is to discuss universities as corporate actors and their networks from a social network analysis perspective. Theoretical and conceptual contributions as well as empirical work linking university behavior and SNA are of interest.
Topics for the session might include:
- Conceptualization of networks between universities as organizations
- Relevant sorts of university-relations
- Strategic inter-university networks
- University ties to industry, media, politics or other sectors
- Scientific, political, or economic significance of university networks
- University boards and interlocking directorates
- Historic changes of university networks
- International comparisons of university networks
The session is not committed to any particular methodological approach, nor will it be restricted to European authors or material with a European focus.