This article investigates the links between universities’ opportunities to shape their research profiles, the changing state interest concerning these profiles, and the impact of profile building on research at university and field levels. While the authority of the Dutch state over research profiles of Dutch universities has increased, university management has considerable operational authority over the inclusion of new research fields and removal of existing research fields. Since all universities have begun to follow the same external signals prescribing applied research, research that has easy access to external funding, and research in fields prioritised by the state, a ‘quasi-market failure’ may emerge, as is demonstrated for evolutionary developmental biology and Bose-Einstein condensation.
We thank Jochen Gläser for numerous discussions and ideas about merging our two empirical studies into one article. We would also like to thank an anonymous reviewer for his or her critical reading of the manuscript. This work was supported by two project grants from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) and a travel grant from the European Science Foundation (ESF).
Laudel, G. and Weyer, E. (2014), "Where have All the Scientists Gone? Building Research Profiles at Dutch Universities and its Consequences for Research", Organizational Transformation and Scientific Change: The Impact of Institutional Restructuring on Universities and Intellectual Innovation (Research in the Sociology of Organizations, Vol. 42), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 111-140. https://doi.org/10.1108/S0733-558X20140000042004
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