ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Persistence and Change

Political Economy of India's Tertiary Education

Privatisation of tertiary education in liberalising India has taken place in the presence of a centralised regulatory regime. This phenomenon does not conform to explanations that understand privatisation as a direct consequence of withdrawal of the state from higher education and challenges the idea that liberalisation has minimal impact on state funding of higher education. This article seeks to understand the phenomenon through a comparative analysis of the tertiary education sector in pre- and post-liberalisation Karnataka which turned into a site of patronage and social management. Privatisation became the means by which the regulatory state placated powerful local groups which stood to lose from the reform process.

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