Poverty of Nation-Building Models In Ukrainian Universities & Politics

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Poverty of Nation-Building Models In Ukrainian Universities & Politics

  1. 1. POVERTY OF NATION-BUILDING MODELSIN UKRAINIAN UNIVERSITIES & POLITICS Mykhailo Minakov Associate Professor, National University of Kiev-Mohyla Academy President, Foundation for Good Politics Fulbright International Conference, 20-21 April 2012, Kyiv, Ukraine
  2. 2. A MIND-SETTING CONTRADICTION• list of four primary University goals does not include Nation-Building• University creates the cadres of national elites and symbolic capital producersIn Ukraine, this contradiction is rather weak: University is centered oneducational function with strong focus on identity building
  3. 3. UNIVERSITY AND NATION-BUILDINGUniversity has its stake in the Nation-Building in two possible ways:• as champions of society, or• as tools of social control from the side of the state.In Ukraine, University is regarded to be a state-owned institution with state-determined goals
  4. 4. NATION-BUILDING ROLE OF UNIVERSITYViews on Nation-Building role of University in Ukraine• in-depth interviews (Feb – Mar 2012) • 10 politicians (8 MPs, 2 party leaders; 6 with the Soviet higher education, 4 with Ukrainian higher education) • 12 university lecturers (6 from Kiev-based universities, 2 from Kharkiv University, 2 from Zaporizhzhya University, 2 from Lviv University; 5 with the Soviet higher education, 7 with Soviet/Ukrainian/Western higher education)Consensus of the both groups on priority of the Nation-Building function of University(9 out of 10 politicians, 10 out of 12 scholars)
  5. 5. CONSENSUSMain consensus issues• University should be state-owned (P 9/10; S 8/12)• University autonomy should be limited since money come from the state budget (P 9/10; S 8/12)• University should provide state with highly educated professionals and patriots in return for state’s money paid (P 10/10; S 10/12)• State-Building depends on University’s success in educating state-minded (z derzhavnytskym myslenniam) citizens (P 9/10; S 9/12)University is responsible for production of political leaders and citizens
  6. 6. NO CONSENSUSLeast consensus issues• model of Nation-Building • model linking ethnic, linguocultural, etatist and nation identities (P 6/10; S 6/12) • etatist/centralist model (P 6/10; S 8/12) • pragmatic model (P 4/10; S 4/12) • dia(poly)logue model (P 3/10; S 4/12)• presence of different cultures is a resource of Nation-Building (P 3/10; S 6/12)• Nation-Building should include multiple local/regional/minority identities (P 4/10; S 4/12)
  7. 7. IDENTIFIED MODELS : ETHNOCULTURAL MODELPoliticians: 6/10; Scholars: 6/12• primordial understanding of nation• korinna ethnic group has a priority on all territory of Ukraine• Ukrainian state is a result of ethnic conflicts in history• teaching and researching history in Ukrainian universities should respond to the ethnic interests of the UkrainiansSome citations: NB should lead to ‘understanding the national interest and readiness to defend it’ ‘trust to the national state, its institutions, to the members of national community, ability to cooperate with them for the large scale aims’ ‘society’s ability to share common civil and spiritual values as the national ones’
  8. 8. IDENTIFIED NB MODELS : ETATIST MODELPoliticians: 6/10; Scholars: 8/12• Ukraine should be a centralist country to avoid collapse• Central Government should be responsible to citizens; local authorities should be appointed by Central Government• Nation-Building means State-Building• All citizens are equal before the state• State should be based on ethnic majority culture with respect to other minorities’ culturesCitations: ‘Ukrainian state was created after centuries of fight for it’ ‘Ukrainian state is a political mechanism to administer territory of Ukraine’ ‘If local communities and regions to govern themselves, they will separate from Ukraine’
  9. 9. IDENTIFIED NB MODELS : PRAGMATIC MODELPoliticians: 4/10; Scholars: 4/12• republican logic: state to provide services to citizens• technocratic logic: state should not intervene in ethnic cultures and NB issues• small state logic: government should concentrate on economy and defense of territory• subsidiarity: local issues must be solved by local governmentsCitations: ‘Soviet citizens created this state, but it tries to work only for ethnic majority’ ‘This state has never been effective in cultural issues. It should not intervene in education and language spheres’
  10. 10. IDENTIFIED MODELS : DIA(POLY)LOGIC MODELPoliticians: 3/10; Scholars: 4/12• state should be based on inclusivity without preconditions• mutual recognition of cultures imperative should be supported by governemt• Nation-Building has nothing to do with the state; government proved to be inefficient in all cultural issues’ solving• seams to be utopianCitations: Inclusive model is whats needed for Ukraine. But none supports it The Ukrainians and the Russians will never agree how to build Ukrainian state
  11. 11. CONCLUSIONS• There is a fundamental consensus that the state has an essential role to play in Nation - Building in Ukraine. But what type of Ukrainian identity state should be promoting is not clear• Widespread belief: state policies have never proved to be effective in reaching the articulated aims. Ukraine’s state involvement into NB prevents society and communities to be active participants of nation-building• The politicians and scholars tend to look at the educational system as a tool to unify a highly diverse Ukrainian population.In the age of nation-state, ones prime loyalty is not to a religion, monarch, or land, but to themedium of ones literacy, the identity part of education, and its political protector… Themonopoly of legitimate education is now more important, more central than is the monopoly oflegitimate violence," he asserts (Gellner, Ernest 1983 Nations and Nationalism. Ithaca: CornellUniversity Press, p. 34)
  12. 12. CONCLUSIONS 2• Ukrainian universities are seen to be responsible for national elites and citizenry production as assigned by government with lesser role of universities own mission and poorer ideological toolkit for nation-building• nation-building function of universities is seen by politicians as a form of social control• Ukrainian higher education effectively reproduces both leaders and citizens • supporting etatist/centralist and ethnocentric models, and • lacking civil and communal views• political class and scholarly community are not ready to support Higher Education reform aiming at diversified model of Nation-Building
  13. 13. RECOMMENDATIONS FOR A REFORM• enforce the University autonomy and diversify forms of University ownership• civic education should be reviewed in terms the nation-building models it promotes• civic education should be enriched with extra- and sub-territorial models• ethnocentric history views should be balanced in University history curricula• preserve the distance of Nation-Building and State-Building models
  14. 14. FINAL REMARKS• balance among private and state-owned universities with substantive increase of autonomy and participation in the global academic networks will lead to diversification of ideas and models of nation-building for Ukraine, as well as to a more strategic and effective participation in the global processes• Ukrainian higher education reform should aim at creation of highly competitive socio-economic system through provision of liberal legal, autonomous institutional and multi-source financial environment to universities: the up-to-date nation able to respond to the challenges globally and locally can be built only in partnership of academic institutes, corporate sector, national government and global networks• the less there is a state control over universities, the more critical are the alumni to dominating nation-building approaches
  15. 15. THANK YOU!

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