ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Academic Bureaucratisation and NEP 2020


Aspiring for an intellectually illuminating and socially cohesive education, an academician treads into the profession with passion and value-laden beliefs to reach out to the hearts of young minds and connect with their brains to explore the world of wisdom. However, the ever-increasing trend of bureaucrats leading educational institutions or non-bureaucrats adopting bureaucratic strategies to run these institutions shatters the thread of head–heart connections of academicians and limits their ability to explore new heights of wisdom. The widespread commercialisation of education in the private sector and the forthcoming financial disengagement of public-funded autonomous institutions, while maintaining stringent administrative control, are all set to strike the very spirit of academic culture, posing newer threats for financial stability. Self-sustenance is desirable in today’s competing and globalising world, but it demands reasonable flexibility against the shackles of power and control. However, nuances of academic bureaucratisation seek to inculcate a compliance-oriented work culture which does not allow academicians to think freely and act diligently as it may possibly lead to psychological insecurity in the minds of the bureaucratic heads of academic institutions.

Academic bureaucracy refers to the administrative systems and structures within higher education institutions (HEIs). It is responsible for the establishment of policies, procedures, and hierarchies to ensure an organisation’s smooth functioning in compliance with government regulations and institutional policies. However, many a times, heads of academic institutions fail to understand when this systematisation of academic affairs transitions to the micromanagement of routine faculty affairs and
centralisation of decision-making power, warranting everyone to comply with their whims and fancies. They cannot resist their temptation of exercising power and control to manage things in a way that they perceive as correct and desirable. The very pursuit of academics rests on freedom of thought and action. This undesirable exercise of power can sometimes be seen as burdensome and hinders the flexibility and autonomy of academic institutions. As a result, it can lead to the stifling of creativity, innovation, and independent thinking, which are some of the most essential ingredients of academic competency.

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Updated On : 22nd Aug, 2023
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