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EUA – The impact of the COVID-19 crisis on university funding in Europe

In a new briefing – The impact of the Covid-19 crisis on university funding in Europe – Thomas Estermann, Enora Bennetot Pruvot, Veronika Kupriyanova and Hristiyana Stoyanova of the European University Association (EUA) explore the expected economic impact of the new coronavirus pandemic on university funding in Europe, in the short to medium term. The analysis builds on the lessons learnt from the 2008 economic crisis.

The authors foresee that:

1. all sources of university income will be affected in some way in the short to medium term;

2. the investment gap between European higher education systems is likely to grow;

3. short-term policy measures will have a long-lasting impact on the sector;

4. university missions and activities will be affected differently;

5. universities will have limited options to reduce their costs;

6. the role of efficiency and effectiveness is likely to increase at policy and institutional levels;

7. public authorities may renew their interest in mergers; and

8. the need for ambitious, coordinated action at European level will be greater than ever.

They also put forward four overarching recommendations addressed to higher education institutions, as well as to policy-makers and funders at different levels.