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Regular version of the site

International Summer School on Higher Education Research, St. Petersburg, Russia

Held since 2013, the IOE International Summer School on Higher Education Research has over the years set itself apart as a premier cross-border academic venue that offers unmatched opportunities to take deep and all-round insights – by harnessing the foremost methodology and data – into research areas topping today’s agendas in higher education scholarship and broader socioeconomic contexts.


Bringing together both aspiring earlier-career researchers and world-distinguished education professionals of various backgrounds and in different specialist areas, the Summer School is a unique learning & networking forum enabling multi-prism discussions to advance our comprehensive understanding of higher education, while also fostering the integration of young academics into the global professional community.

International Summer School 2020 - CANCELLED 

“Theoretical and Conceptual Perspectives in Higher Education Research”

May 24–30, 2020

St. Petersburg, Russia

This year, the Summer School will focus on theoretical and conceptual perspectives in the study of higher education. As a multi-disciplinary field, higher education research draws on multiple scholarly frameworks and traditions, often synthesizing different disciplinary methods in order to address problems of policy and practice in higher education or explain the relationship between higher education and society. During the Summer School, the faculty and participants will discuss the strengths and limitations of various theoretical approaches and concepts developed in economics, sociology, political science, cultural studies, and multi-disciplinary research perspectives in higher education. They will also consider how these theories and concepts can be applied within different national contexts and reflect on the comparative dimension.


We regret to let you know that we had to cancel this year’s Summer School due to COVID-19 emergency directives.
Please stay tuned to be the first to learn about deadlines and dates of the Summer School 2021.


Exploring Theories, Sharing Practical Insights

We are anchored in an ambition to leverage the grasp of how different theories and approaches from across disciplines apply to and work in modern studies of higher education, so that younger academics can frame and deliver higher-impact research more in sync with the pressing agendas in policy and practice. The School is able to contribute to reinforcing this ‘research – policy’ nexus thanks to how comprehensively it is designed, where the key distinctive features are: 

  • Focus on essential concepts and research ideas (theories and concepts in higher education and social science research, theoretical rationales underpinning policies; development of new approaches)
  • Synthesis of conceptual (theoretical) and practical (policy) components in research
  • Multidisciplinarity
  • Cross-country and global perspectives (faculty and participants from different corners of the globe share specific country-case evidence and international insights).

    By featuring a string of vibrant formats, including, among others, multidisciplinary seminars, methodology workshops, research presentations, co-authoring papers, etc., the Summer School offers an academic program as diverse, complementary and engaging as to ensure early-career enrollees in different research domains and at all levels can gain meaningful theoretical and practical inputs that will form important groundwork for success in their future international scholarship.

The School encourages applications from advanced Master’s students, doctoral students, junior faculty members and institutional researchers with a background in all relevant social science fields (sociology, economics, political science, public administration, management, etc.). The working language is English.

School Faculty

Since its debut back in 2013, the Summer School has had a privilege of welcoming as its faculty a superb range of international scholars to lecture and network with their junior-career fellows on multiple theoretical and applied dimensions in the studies of higher education.

Tommaso Agasisti

School of Management, Politecnico di Milano, Italy

Steven Brint

University of California, Riverside, the USA


Isak Froumin
Institute of Education, HSE University Moscow, Russia

Gaële Goastellec

Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Yaroslav Kuzminov

HSE University Moscow, Russia

Simon Marginson

Centre for Global Higher Education, University of Oxford, the UK

Rajani Naidoo

Institute for Policy Research, University of Bath, the UK

Pedro Teixeira

Research Centre on Higher Education Policy, Faculty of Economics, University of Porto, Portugal

Jussi Välimaa

Finnish Institute for Educational Research, University of Jyvaskyla, Finland

Po Yang

China Institute of Education Finance Research, Peking University, China


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