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New Institutionalism in Higher Education

New institutionalist theory and research (which synthesized organizational theory and classic institutionalism) is an established approach to inquiry in the field of higher education research. Its aim is to shed light on how universities and other higher education organizations shape and are shaped by their interaction with economic, political, cultural, and other social subsystems; how they change as a result of global trends and policies; and how and why they differ across and within countries. It complements and extends functional and rational approaches to organizations by foregrounding the way institutional structures emerge from processes of institutional isomorphism, by which a new organization attempts to gain legitimacy by imitating the institutional forms and structures of established institutions. It views educational institutions as key producers of social ...

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