Profiteering and Emulation

Issue 4

“Profiteering and Emulation”

George Koumantos
Page 100 -109


There is presently a clash of ideologies concerning Greek universities: equality versus effectiveness seems to exemplify this clash. For its supporters the state university seemingly stands for the former; for its opponents the private university stands for the latter. In an attempt to reach an acceptable compromise, the establishment of a hybrid type of institution, the non-state, non- profit university, has been proposed. It could allegedly incorporate all the advantages and preclude all deficiencies of both parent institutions. Yet, this hybrid institution is generally foredoomed to failure. In the first place, no real businessman would be willing to invest without any profit, unless he looks forward to gaining other kind of benefits (social status, political influence, fringe benefits etc.) On the other hand a non-profit university would have to rely on high student fees that only the rich could afford (a violation of the equity principle) or, alternatively, to rely on donations from big firms in which case they would determine research and teaching priorities (a violation of the common good principle and of the development of an all-round personality at the individual level). In any case the quality of university education is at state.Private or non-profit universities are not therefore the proper cure for the malaise of the state university –it is actually the means to bypass its problems. What is really needed is the substantial financial support on the part of the state and the radical reform of the existed legal structure for higher education. It is only through such measures that the long standing problems of the university can be confronted.