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A financial perspective: categories of higher education institutions

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image of Frontiers of Education in China

From a financial perspective, the criteria for category distinction of higher education institutions should be based on the ownership of institution property and income for recurrent expenditure. The development of modern higher education witnessed the period wherein higher education institutions have both private property and private payment for recurrent expenditure. The development also saw the period wherein all the institution properties were owned by the state and all the recurrent expenditure were paid by the government. Accordingly, universities could be divided into two categories of “public” and “private” institutions until the 1970s. However, things have been changing greatly over the past 20 years. Property ownership and payment for recurrent expenditure have been separated. The public institutions appeal to more and more individuals sharing recurrent expenditure, while private institutions ask for more and more public financial support. Therefore, some financially mixed institutions came into being and “three categories with sub-groups” has become a new phenomenon.


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