Massification and Privatisation of Higher Education in East Asia: Critical Reflections on Graduate Employment from Sociological and Political Economic Perspectives

Activity: Talks or PresentationsOther Invited Talks or Presentations


East Asia experienced a significant increase in higher education enrolment in recent decades, the main consequence of which was the oversupply of university graduates for local and global labour markets. Intensified competition and mismatched employability further create new challenges for university graduates. This study critically examines how the massification and privatisation of higher education in East Asia affect graduate employment in the country. In addition, this study challenges the concept of human capital theory for overpromising that individual investment in higher education would entail prosperous career development and advanced social mobility for graduates. Based on a comparative data analysis of graduate employment in selected East Asian countries/regions, this study highlights the impact of intergenerational inequality on not only graduate employment but also social mobility. Moreover, this study argues that an improved understanding of graduate employment can be achieved by considering the broad political economic perspective when analysing intergenerational inequality and youth employment dilemmas.
Period25 Mar 2022
Event titleChina and Regional Studies Joint Webinar Series
Event typeSeminar
OrganisersSchool of Graduate Studies, University of Turku
Degree of RecognitionInternational