Rankings and Global Knowledge Governance

  • Tero Erkkilä
  • Ossi Piironen
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Global Higher Education book series (PSGHE)


Though the new indicators that are entering the field propose new methodological and conceptual openings, they instead offer mild contrasts to the previous figures and do not challenge the epistemic knowledge and practices of the field. In making these connections and their consequences visible through our analysis, we propose that rankings are a constitutive element of global knowledge governance. We observe a thickening of the political imaginary of competition, traversing the different levels of assessment from global to local. The fragmentation of indicators dents conceptual coherence and limits their relevance as tools of evaluation. Yet, their policy relevance remains high. Moreover, as indicator knowledge has become a universal language of transnational governance, it also limits what can be argued and presented as valid knowledge.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tero Erkkilä
    • 1
  • Ossi Piironen
    • 2
  1. 1.University of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland
  2. 2.Ministry for Foreign Affairs of FinlandHelsinkiFinland

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