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A series of articles on the topic of public-private partnership in VET was published in the Journal of New Economic Association (NEA).

The articles were prepared within the framework of the project "Public-private partnership in VET: the example of firms in Russia and China", supported by a grant of the Russian Science Foundation.

The papers appeared in a special section of the Journal "Hot topic. Round table":

A.А. Yakovlev “Demand for Skills and Training, Middle Income Trap and Prospects of Catch-Up Development in Russia”

Abstract. Since mid 2000s the Russian managers regularly declared the shortage of skilled labor in manufacturing industry, but the Russian scholars provided different assessments of this phenomenon. This paper argues that this shortage is real, and it is caused by the asymmetry of information and the risks of opportunism in relations between enterprises, educational institutions and workers, which leads to an insufficient level of investments by firms in the development of skills and training of workers. At the same time, the lack of qualifications and skills is a factor restraining economic development and predetermining Russia's entry into a “middle income trap”. Taking into account foreign and Russian experience, it is shown that the solution of the problems of personnel training is associated with the introduction of public-private partnership mechanisms, primarily at the regional level.

I.V. Abankina, F.F. Dudyrev, A.I. Shabalin “Management of VET System: from Budget Dependency to Public-Private Partnerships”

Abstract.The article describes changes in financing and management of vocational education and training (VET) system in post-Soviet period. It is demonstrated that the transfer of VETorganizations to the regional level was due to the disintegration of the Soviet system of planning. Within the process VET system transfer to the regional level, the ratio of federal/regional financing was significantly changed. The share of expenditure of consolidated budgets of the Russian regions for VET-education has increased steadily against the background of the simultaneous reduction in federal level funding. During the last 15 years the share of expenditure on vocational education in the overall structure of public expenditure on education was rapidly decreasing. As affected of 2008 crisis and deficit of regional budgets, the Federal Program for the Development of Education 2011—2015 played an important role in the process of updates material and technical basis. Another crucial effect of Program consist in expansion of private-public partnership model in VET system.

T.F. Remington “Public-Private Partnerships in VET: Translating the German Model of Dual Education”

Abstract. Around the world, governments, educators and businesses have expressed growing interest in German-style methods of vocational education (VET), where schools and firms share responsibility for providing technical and vocational education through apprenticeship training, a system often called “dual education.” Dual education ensures a close fit between the demands of a dynamically changing economy and the skill profiles of those graduating from educational institutions. To a large extent, dual education systems enable young people to acquire not simply technical skills, but broadly defined competencies that serve as the foundation for rewarding careers and social esteem. However, actual implementation of dual education outside the core Germanic countries in Europe has proven to be extremely challenging. However, in some countries, local partnerships embracing elements of dual education have formed, uniting educational institutions, government entities, and firms in partnerships to upgrade VET. This paper discusses some of the characteristic patterns of such partnerships and the pathways leading to their formation. The paper focuses particularly on the US case.

Po Yang “Coordinating Public-Private Partnership in VET Sector: Evidence from China”

Abstract. Chinese government encourages public-private-partnership (PPP) programs in vocational education (VET) sector in order to solve the collective action dilemma in training market. The article reviews background and policy framework for PPP reform and its current development. Descriptive analysis based on 257 firm-college pairs and 1,679 specific collaboration practices between 171 vocational colleges and 257 industry partners show the most common forms of collaboration at provincial level include master instructors assigned by firms, faculty training, stipends and wages for students, and student aid. Moreover, there is a high degree of variation in terms of popularity of each practice among firms. Firm’s choice of collaboration model depends on its ownership type. This paper further illustrates how intermediary organizations can facilitate inter-firm collaboration and school-firm cooperation under three PPP coordination models, including firm-led, government-led, and jointed model, based on analyses of multiple case studies in various Chinese regions. The paper concludes with a summary of findings and suggestions for future PPP coordination.

I. Marques II “Vocational Education and the Practice of Public-Private Partnerships in Russia’s Regions”

Abstract. Recent work on economic development has pointed to productivity growth as an important factor in enabling countries to transition to the ranks of high-income economies. Vocational education is widely seen as one of the means of achieving this, although it requires a close match between the high-quality skills that firms demand and those skills actually taught. Recent efforts by the federal and regional governments in Russia have encouraged the spread of Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) between the firms and vocational education institutions as a means to ensure such a match. There is a great deal of variation across regions in the forms of PPP and their adoption, however. This paper seeks to describe the forms of contemporary vocational education in Russia using a novel database of PPP in Russia’s regions. Summarizing the recent work, it also attempts to explain why regions vary in their adoption and spread.