Political Ideology And Academic Autonomy In Ethiopia
Keywords:academic, autonomy, Ethiopia, ideology, university
This study explores whether State political ideology in Ethiopia influenced the academic autonomy of that country’s universities. It asks what the historical trends in the development of higher education show about political ideology and its relationship with university autonomy in the Ethiopian context. After reviewing different university autonomy models (Berdahl, 1990; Choi, 2018; Ordorika, 2003; Reilly, Turcan & Bugaian, 2016), the study delineates the primary stakeholders of academic autonomy, namely, academic staff, students, and the government. It discusses academic autonomy in a comparative light across three regimes in Ethiopia, namely, the Imperial (1916-1974), the Socialist (1974-1991), and the Revolutionary Democratic regimes (1991-2018). Data from various sources show that in all these three regimes, the State negatively influenced academic autonomy, including by imposing a particular political ideology that was favored by the government in power at the time. However, the form and level of State influence have varied across these regimes.
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