NPM of the masses: the expansion and modernisation in Chilean higher education, 1999–2016

José M. Salazar, Mauricio Rifo, Pete Leihy

Producción científica: Contribución a una revistaArtículorevisión exhaustiva

1 Cita (Scopus)


This study reviews the performance of the Improvement of Quality and Equity in Higher Education programme (MECESUP). MECESUP was executed in three stages between 1999 and 2016 by Chile’s Ministry of Education and its directly state-subsidised university sector, with World Bank financing and advisory. The account explores achievements and failures in pursuing the twin expansion and modernisation of Chilean universities under a New Public Management (NPM) consciousness. A review of primarily European understandings of policy rationalisation in the context of the massification of higher education informs and contrasts with the Chilean case, which in turn may be instructive for similar initiatives in other Latin American and developing world contexts. The study tables illustrative interview data from personnel contemporaneously embedded in government, quasi-autonomous regulatory agencies and universities. The data falls into four key dimensions: first, participants’ initial expectations of the programme; second, issues that stem from the throwing open of substantial contestable funding; third, how an NPM philosophy would be planted within universities through MECESUP’s influence; and, lastly, the ways in which quality assurance attained centrality within Chilean higher education policy.

Idioma originalInglés
Páginas (desde-hasta)153-177
Número de páginas25
PublicaciónPolicy Reviews in Higher Education
EstadoPublicada - 2022

Áreas temáticas de ASJC Scopus

  • Educación


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