Universities and the Production of Elites

Discourses, Policies, and Strategies of Excellence and Stratification in Higher Education

  • Roland Bloch
  • Alexander Mitterle
  • Catherine Paradeise
  • Tobias Peter

Part of the Palgrave Studies in Global Higher Education book series (PSGHE)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. Roland Bloch, Alexander Mitterle, Catherine Paradeise, Tobias Peter
    Pages 1-29
  3. Setting Up Narratives and Rationales

  4. Disruptive Policies since the 1990s

  5. Organizing Competition through Incentives: New Policy Devices

  6. University Strategies for Redesigning Higher Education as Stratified Systems

  7. The Production of New Elites?

  8. Back Matter
    Pages 387-392

About this book


This book explores how universities as organizations influence and construct the production of academic elites and elitist institutions. It analyzes the role played by the reorganization of higher education (HE) institutions, stimulated by new performance-based narratives aimed at building attractiveness towards stakeholders such as governments, prospective employers, academics, and students. Based on American, European, and Asian case studies of HE systems and institutions considered at various scales, the volume analyzes the consequences of increasing competition between HE institutions which are facing challenges such as the internationalization of higher education supply, the shortage of public resources and the structural changes of labor market demands. It argues that policy discourses and tools, as well as assessment devices such as rankings and accreditation, incentivize HE institutions to develop positioning strategies that contribute to stratification and the production of elites. It will be of great interest to students and researchers in the fields of higher education, sociology, and education policy.


social elites excellence in higher education private universities rankings research elites

Editors and affiliations

  • Roland Bloch
    • 1
  • Alexander Mitterle
    • 2
  • Catherine Paradeise
    • 3
  • Tobias Peter
    • 4
  1. 1.Institute of SociologyMartin Luther University Halle-WittenbergHalleGermany
  2. 2.Institute of SociologyMartin Luther University Halle-WittenbergHalleGermany
  3. 3.Institute for Research and Innovation in SocietyUniversity Paris-Est Marne-la-ValléeChamps-sur-MarneFrance
  4. 4.Institute of SociologyAlbert Ludwigs University FreiburgFreiburgGermany

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages Education Education (R0)
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-53969-0
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-53970-6
  • Series Print ISSN 2662-4214
  • Series Online ISSN 2662-4222
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
Industry Sectors
Finance, Business & Banking