This book is composed of the results of the Higher Education Policy Research Project of the Japanese Association of Higher Education Research, which was proposed by the President of the Association, Masayuki Kobayashi, and was carried out by a group of researchers within the association under the leadership of board member Takashi HATA. Research on higher education policy-making has been one of the major topics of interest since the establishment of the Association. Indeed, the association’s mission statement declares, “the establishment of an academic society is becoming an ever more critical issue for promoting cooperation and exchanges among the researchers from different study fields, strengthening the theoretical and methodological basis of research, seeking further deepened and developed research, dissemination of the outcomes of this research and contribution to the solution of practical and policy-related challenges.”
This research project aims to study the process of policy-making for higher education in Japan, which has changed rapidly in recent years. This change is occurring not only in Japan but also in Europe and the United States. In order to study from a global perspective, the research project was carried out with the participation of experts studying higher education in the United States, France, and the United Kingdom, and new research results were produced through comparative higher education policy analysis.
In the Higher Education Policy Project, members interviewed officials from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), and have been energetically studying the policy-making process, especially the relationship between the official residence and the MEXT. At the same time, they have analyzed the decision-making process of higher education policies in each country. We believe that research that examines the decision-making process of higher education policies in so many countries is unparalleled and offers an unprecedented contribution to higher education research.