The global university, the political economy of knowledge in Asia and the segmentation of China's higher education
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This research analyses the expansion and transformation of higher education in Asia, focusing in particular on Chinese universities. It shows the rising of the so-‐‑ called global university, that is, above all, an inclusive process which makes academic knowledge production something heterogeneous, complex and composite – characterised by different actors both private and public, institutional and non-‐‑institutional. The global university is a point of multiplicity that places our view in the midst of the transformation of educational policies and knowledge taken as whole. It reveals a ‘global knowledge order’ parallel to a ‘new international division of labour’, where the higher education is becoming an important device in the filtering, restriction, and return of population and skilled workers around a whole set of internal national/transnational borders based on knowledge. Developing the concepts of stratification and differentiation, I investigate how the transformation of the educational system brings out and multiplies, rather than mitigates, the differences between universities, while this same segmentation refers to an original and powerful method of management of the increasingly qualified workforce. Higher education and its internationalization nowadays is an important dispositive to segment population within globalization, reconfigures hierarchies and manages the complex displacement of the present having the same force (or even more) as those of gender and race. Moreover, the Global University represents the most interesting terrain to observe the development of an original measurement of labour in its metamorphosis and the value form in cognitive capitalism. The growing intra-‐‑regional mobility in Asia and the internationalisation of higher education characterise the innovative cartography of the present, wherein knowledge production becomes spatially dispersed and globally integrated. Knowledge, geographically embedded, defines the order of the current post-‐‑ colonial space, while the Global University describes not only this kind of order, but also how this imbalance is used by the skilled workforce to survive in the local labour market.
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