Special Issue "Access to Higher Education in Competitive Marketplaces: A Critical Appraisal of Policy Aims to Reconcile Equality of Opportunity and Marketisation"

A special issue of Social Sciences (ISSN 2076-0760).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 August 2019

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Colin McCaig

Centre for Development and Research in Education, Sheffield Hallam University, Arundel Building, City Campus, Sheffield S1 1WB, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: educational policy and policymaking; inequalities of access to higher education; the impact of market 'neoliberal' reforms on the behaviour of institutions and the prospects for equality of access and participation in HE; the ability of states and HE institutions to widen the partcipation of currently didvantaged groups in further and higher education
Guest Editor
Dr. Marion Bowl

School of Education, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: adult and community education; lifelong learning; informal and non-formal education; post-compulsory education; widening access to higher education; teaching and learning in tertiary and higher education; participatory research methods and approaches; gender and adult education

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are seeking submissions to this exciting Special Issue of the journal Social Sciences. This initial call is for interested scholars and researchers to submit short abstracts (of 250 words, by 1st February 2019) from which authors will be selected to submit full papers (5–8000 words) by late summer 2019, with an expected publication date of Autumn 2019, approximately two months after submission of final manuscripts.

Since the 1970s, higher education has been influenced and re-shaped by neoliberalism, which advocates the application of market principles to areas which were formerly regarded as being in the public domain. While there are differences in view over the extent to which higher education operates as a ‘pure’ market or a ‘quasi-market’ or whether it simply displays ‘market-like’ features, the reality of marketisation is beyond dispute, and its impact on higher education institutions (HEIs), their staff and students—and the relationships between them—has been profound. This call is specifically aimed at identifying instances of neoliberal marketisation that have impacted on equalities (or inequalities) of access. It acknowledges that such effects have played out differently in different national and regional territories (Bowl, McCaig and Hughes 2018), dependent on the specifics of historical, political and cultural contexts. Therefore, while we welcome theoretical analyses of neoliberal marketisation as a social and economic phenomenon, we are particularly interested in examining the relationship between national context and policy pressures to marketise HE systems.

Prof. Colin McCaig
Dr. Marion Bowl
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Social Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charges (APCs) of 350 CHF (Swiss Francs) per published paper are partially funded by institutions through Knowledge Unlatched for a limited number of papers per year. Please contact the editorial office before submission to check whether KU waivers, or discounts are still available. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • marketisation of higher education
  • neoliberalism
  • higher education reforms
  • social justice
  • social mobility
  • inequality of access
  • equality of access
  • widening participation policy
  • consumerism
  • tuition fees

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
Soc. Sci. EISSN 2076-0760 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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