chapter  2
28 Pages

Multinational corporations and higher education

Some hidden dynamics
BySilvana Tarlea

This chapter emphasizes the peculiarities of higher education (HE) in the region and the increasingly dominant role of multinational companies (MNCs). It presents macro-level data on inward foreign direct investment, on foreign affiliate’s statistics and on the dynamics of HE indicators enrolment and funding in the ten Central and Eastern Europe economies, showing their co-evolution. MNCs have more room for manoeuvre than domestic companies and are more likely to implement their own strategies in a destination economy. The Czech Republic, Romania, Hungary, Estonia and Slovakia have all had higher shares of their employees working in foreign-owned MNCs than the UK. A MNC tends to employ around 10 per cent more staff with HE degrees than its domestic counterpart. A key implication of the findings is that governments need to spend more on HE and at the same time bargain with MNCs to move production activities to their countries that require more sophisticated labour.