INFORMATION SUPPORT FOR DEVELOPING SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY IN HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS
Keywords:social responsibility, university, autonomy, academic freedom
The paper discusses the selected aspects related to the issues of developing social responsibility in higher education institutions. Emphasis is placed on the growing role of higher education and its evolution in modern society as a crucial element in enhancing cultural, social, economic and political development in Ukraine and as a solid foundation in building internal capacity, promoting human rights, sustainable development, democracy and justice. The study focuses on the need to adhere to the key provisions of the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Higher Education (1998), in particular, to share the idea that “higher education should be viewed as a public service. The funding of higher education requires both public and private resources. The role of the state remains essential in this regard. Public support for higher education and research remains essential to ensure a balanced achievement of educational and social missions. It is argued that the slowdown in economic growth and structural transformations have increased the value of education and its social responsibility to society. The research hypothesis is the statement that social responsibility, academic freedom and autonomy have become the driving forces in increasing the demand for higher education. In this context, it is assumed that universities should maintain a reasonable balance between these components. The purpose of the study is to substantiate the need for information support of the processes of developing social responsibility in higher education institutions within the education services market. To attain the study objectives, the following research methods were employed: expert analysis of the higher education transparency; methods of assessing the key stakeholders’ involvement (students, employers and civil society) in encouraging the University social activities. The findings have identified the challenges and barriers to fostering further academic freedom and institutional autonomy, academic freedom and public-private partnership, boosting academic freedom as an ethical dimension and social responsibility, promoting academic freedom and entrepreneurship. It is argued that education – technological progress complementarity has a number of important implications for the national economic policy. The conclusions verify that the relationships between education, innovation and qualifications is the background for developing social responsibility in universities that contributes to integrating basic education and employment, lifelong learning and maintenance of professional qualifications, promoting innovation and social accountability.