Transformative and Selective Systems: A Study in  Comparative Sociology of Academic Markets Careers

  • Mikhail Sokolov European University at St. Petersburg
Keywords: academic career, tenure, academic mobility, recruitment, national academic system, selective academic system, transformative academic system, academic labour markets, selection process, inbreeding


The article explores the relationship between academic career structure and labor market organization characterizing different national academic systems. Selective and transformative systems are described as two opposite ideal types. The principal constitutive difference between them is that the selective system requires scholars to move between organizations at least ones during their academic career, and introduces time limits for staying at the lower steps of the academic ladder, while transformative systems do not prohibit inbreeding or ban staying indefinitely at lower academic ranks. The academic systems of Great Britain, Germany, Russia, USA, and France are used to demonstrate how this fundamental difference is related to many other parameters of institutional organization of national academic worlds, such as labor market competitiveness, selection procedures complexity, whether the labor market is driven by supply or demand, the level of geographic mobility, the presence of tenure, the role of formal indicators in academic productivity assessment, and the overall status of the academic profession.


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How to Cite
Sokolov, Mikhail. 2019. “Transformative and Selective Systems: A Study in  Comparative Sociology of Academic Markets Careers”. Voprosy Obrazovaniya / Educational Studies Moscow, no. 2 (June), 35-77.
Theoretical and Applied Research