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Institution of Higher Education and Science as a Factor of Economic Development

Institution of Higher Education and Science as a Factor of Economic Development

Journal of Economic Regulation, , Vol. 12 (no. 3),

The modern economy is undergoing a structural transformation that enhances the role of knowledge and technology for economic development. Knowledge and technologies are created by researchers who received professional training in universities. The higher education system in Russia is changing similar to those in Western countries earlier. Institutional design should analyse knowledge about management routines, values, working rules, and the functioning of the institutional environment. The institutions operating in society can be identified by studying the narratives of the actors and the explanations for their actions. In the article, the in-depth interview is used for studying institutional changes in education and science. Data collected in projects «Identification of institutions and organizational mechanisms for the merger of universities in the context of the socio-economic development of the region» (10 interviews) and «Institutional traps of optimization of the sphere of education and science» (20 interviews, 3 expert focus group interviews). The narrative analysis identified interest groups in education and science that are involved in the functioning of institutional traps. The presence of special interest groups is an integral attribute of institutional traps that arise in conditions of quasi-optimal equilibrium. Combining research data shows the importance of the institution of higher education and science for economic development.

Keywords: institutional economics; narrative economics; higher education; economic development; interest groups

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