Transnational circulations of university reforms and models: The policy-making of the LMD in Burundi

Abstract : This proposal deals with the implementation of the European higher education model LMD (“Licence-Master-Doctorate”) at University of Burundi in Africa. Basing on empirical data from fieldwork in Burundi, the aim of this paper is to analyse the implementation processes by discussing the literature on policy transfers. Therefore, we ask the question, if the circulation of the LMD model from Europe to Burundi confirms the results of the policy transfers studies. Several scholars have demonstrated how policy transfers between “developed/industrial countries”, are shaped by bargaining and compromising between international and national actors (Delpeuch, 2009; Hassenteufel and de Maillard, 2013). The situation in “fragile” states which often depend on aid from the international donor community would invalidate this result a priori. Burundi is generally ranked as a fragile state (Specker et al., 2010) where policy processes would be controlled and shaped by international stakeholders (Darbon, 2015). However, the case study of the implementation of the LMD model at the University of Burundi reveals the main role of domestic actors (national and academic elite) in the renegotiations of policies and reforms. The transfer of the LMD model in Burundi presents an opportunity to political and academic actors to reshape the system of elite formation, which is a core question in the Burundian post-conflict situation. Thereby, our proposal addresses a central assumption of the panel: although transfer studies, especially in African contexts, underline the international dimension of policy-making, the example of higher education reforms in Burundi reaffirms the importance of domestic configurations in the negotiation of policies. This case study stems from a PhD dissertation in political science (Provini, 2015) which analyses the circulation of higher education reforms in East Africa (universities of Dar es Salaam, Nairobi, Makerere and Burundi) in a comparative perspective. The empirical data was produced during a two-months fieldwork which was conducted between February and March 2013 in Bujumbura. We carried out 45 semi-directive interviews with various stakeholders of the implementation process (administrative staff, political leaders, funding partners, lecturers and students). A press review including different French speaking newspapers (Le Renouveau du Burundi and Iwacu) and covering the period between the1980’s-2010’s completes our data.
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Communication dans un congrès
3rd International Conference on Public Policy (ICPP3), Jun 2017, Sinagapore, Singapore
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Olivier Provini. Transnational circulations of university reforms and models: The policy-making of the LMD in Burundi. 3rd International Conference on Public Policy (ICPP3), Jun 2017, Sinagapore, Singapore. 〈hal-01540747〉

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