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ERIC Number: EJ1085666
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0142-5692
Fabricated World Class: Global University League Tables, Status Differentiation and Myths of Global Competition
David, Matthew
British Journal of Sociology of Education, v37 n1 p169-189 2016
UK media coverage of global university league tables shows systematic bias towards the Russell Group, although also highlighting tensions within its membership. Coverage positions UK "elite" institutions between US superiority and Asian ascent. Coverage claims that league table results warrant UK university funding reform. However, league table data for all years to 2012 (when major funding reforms were implemented--most radically in England) do not show either US superiority or Asian ascent. Citation bias defines media content. Text itself is structured by three discursive "ratchets": highlighting US successes but never failures, rising Asian institutions but never falls, and claiming that UK results warrant the same policy irrespective of whether results improve or worsen. These combine with selective doubt by "elites" who question but are not questioned. These four discursive mechanisms fabricate an illusory threat of global competition. This threat is then used to warrant neo-liberal policies at home.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Asia; United Kingdom; United States
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A