The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of financial sustainability indicators of higher education on foreign direct investment (FDI) using empirical evidence from 26 Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries. The basic criterion for determining the financial sustainability of higher education institutions included indicators of income generated by higher education institutions being greater than the operational costs. However, this requires financial sustainability, which depends on financial self-sufficiency without seeking external financial assistance. This situation is affected by investment attractiveness.
Three quantitative proxies were used in this study to explain the financial sustainability indicators in higher education institutions of OECD countries: financial expenditures proxy measured by current tertiary education expenditure (CE); efficiency proxy measured by university-life expectancy (ULE) and endogenous growth proxy measured by gross enrolment tertiary ratio (GETR) to show the effect on FDI. Also, this study used six control variables considered an important part of experimental design and refers to contributing factors that were eliminated to clarify the independent variable and a dependent variable nexus. The quantitative data was collected from World Development Indicators (WDI). This study applied a STATA version using panel data techniques for over 15 years from 2001 to 2015 and also used fixed effect (FE) and random effect (RE) estimations to address problems of heterogeneity. To mitigate the endogeneity problem, the generalized method of moments (GMM) was also used.
The results of this study were derived from the adoption of financial models applied in higher education institutions to test the financial sustainability indicators. Based on the RE and FE results, a one per cent increase in the current tertiary education expenditure caused about 0.19 and 0.18 per cent increase in FDI in the OECD economies. This positive and significant impact was higher when considering the problem of endogeneity by applying the GMM estimations. FDI grew by about 0.22 per cent when the CE increased by one percent. Meanwhile, there was a significant and negative relationship between FDI and the GETR variable for the FE results but this previous relationship was insignificant for RE estimations. The FDI in OECD economies decreased by about 0.0006 per cent when the GETR increased by 1 per cent. This negative effect became larger when applying the GMM estimations. Finally, the ULE results showed there was a positive and insignificant relationship between ULE and FDI for all estimators.
The management and analysis of the financial health indicators is necessary to evaluate educational activities but is not sufficient to achieve financial sustainability, which extends beyond the indicators of financial health to encompass factors such as student achievements; research and scientific output; community engagement; productive capacity; quality inputs; risk and infrastructure; and systems.
This study is considered one of the few existing studies examining the ways in which to achieve financial sustainability in higher education institutions using quantitative financial methods. Specifically, this study adopted Pecking order theory in its analysis of the financial sustainability indicators to clarify whether the financial sustainability indicators of higher education institutions lead to an improvement in the attractiveness of foreign investment in OECD countries in the long run. The findings contribute to the necessity of adopting internal financing sources in accordance with the Pecking Order theory to help achieve financial sustainability growth.
Alshubiri, F. (2020), "Analysis of financial sustainability indicators of higher education institutions on foreign direct investment: Empirical evidence in OECD countries", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJSHE-10-2019-0306Download as .RIS
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