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Dr Liviu Matei

Dr Liviu Matei

  • Academics
  • Supervisors

Professor of Higher Education and Public Policy

Head of the King's School of Education, Communication & Society (ECS).

Research subject areas

  • Education
  • Policy

Contact details


Dr Liviu Matei is the Head of the King's School of Education, Communication & Society.

Prior to joining ECS in March 2022, he was Professor of Higher Education Policy at the Central European University (CEU), where he directed the Yehuda Elkana Center for Higher Education, a collaborative academic initiative promoting applied policy research and professional training in higher education.

Dr Matei established the European Award for Excellence in Teaching in the Social Sciences and Humanities and the Global Teaching Fellowship Programme; and founded the Global Observatory on Academic Freedom, which is supported by the Open Society University Network, and the Open Society Research Platform, in 2021. He served on the Steering Committee of CIVICA - The European University of Social Sciences.

In addition to teaching at universities in Europe and the US, Dr Matei has consulted in the area of higher education policy and conducted applied policy research projects for the World Bank, UNESCO, OSCE, the Council of Europe, the European Commission, and other international organisations (intergovernmental and non-governmental), national authorities and universities from Europe and Asia.

He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the American University of Central Asia and serves on the editorial boards of the Internationalisation of Higher Education Journal and the European Journal of Higher Education.

After studying philosophy, psychology and sociology, Dr Matei completed his PhD at Bucharest University, Romania. He received fellowships to study at the Institut Supérieur de Formation Sociale et de Communication, Bruxelles, The New School University New York, Université Paris X Nanterre, Université de Savoie, the Salzburg Seminar, and the Maison des Sciences de l’Homme Paris.


 Dr Matei's main research interests include: 

  • Academic freedom and university autonomy.
  • Internationationalisation of higher education.
  • Quality assurance in higher education. 
  • Public policy on higher education.  
  • University governance and funding.

PhD supervision

Prof. Matei supervises PhD dissertations in the broad area of higher education policy, including topics such as internationalisation and globalisation of higher education, geopolitics of higher education, higher education and development, higher governance and funding, academic freedom and university autonomy.

PhD dissertations defended

  • Elene Jiblaze - Suspended development: Institutional transformation and lack of improvement in the higher education system of post-revolution Georgia (2016)
  • Renata Kralikova - Transition legacies, rules of appropriateness and ‘modernization agenda’ in higher education governance in Lithuania, Romania and Slovakia (2016)
  • Norbert Sabic - Diversification of higher education in Europe. A policy narrative that legitimizes resource concentration (2016)
  • Daniela Craciun - Systematizing national higher education internationalization strategies: reconceptualizing a process (2019)
  • Simona Torotcoi - From international commitments to institutional reality: the case of higher education policy in Europe (2020)
  • Elizaveta Potapova - Making sense of academic freedom in Russia (2021)
  • Adrienn Nyircsak - Reflexivity in European higher education governance: Studies on practice (2022)

Current PhD supervision

  • Gunsyma Shaydorova - Internationalization of Russian higher education: Governmental policies and institutional responses. A view from Siberia.
  • Omar Abozeid - Agency-structure interplay in the transition-to-employment of occupationally transversal higher education graduates.
  • Maryna Lakhno - Universities: Local agents of global changes. The UN Sustainable Development Goals as a global policy framework for higher education.
  • Samuel Kiiru - Knowledge production, transfer and utilization in agriculture: A case study of three public universities in Kenya.
  • Laura Palencikova - Institutional responses to academic dishonesty and the new technological frontier: the role of cultural responsiveness.