Bjørn Stensaker is a Professor of Higher Education at the University of Oslo and is also involved in the Hedda Master programme in higher education with teaching and supervision of students. He is also a member of the research group HEIK (Higher Education: Institutional dynamics and knowledge cultures).
Recently, he was appointed to a newly founded expert group in Norway that will examine the funding structure of higher education and advise the Minister on future developments. The Commission is led by Torbjørn Hægeland and it will deliver their conclusions by the end of the year. On this occasion, we asked Bjørn about his thoughts related to the new appointment and his evaluation on the current state of affairs in Norwegian higher education.
You have newly been appointed to the national commission that will look into the funding system of HE in Norway. Could you tell a little what the role and mandate for the group will be?
Well, it is still early days, and it should be underlined that the Commission haven’t had its forst meeting yet. However, the Minister has been quite clear that one of the main aims of the Commission is to look into how quality within the sector can be fostered through the funding system. This would imply a shift from the current system which is more emphasising productivity/efficiency.
In your opinion, what are some of the core issues in Norway that highlight the need for re-examining the funding system?