Combatting corruption in higher education in Ukraine

Anna Vasylyeva & Ortrun Merkle


Corruption is a widespread phenomenon at Ukrainian higher education institutions (HEIs), with more than a quarter of students reporting participation in corrupt activities. This paper explores the dominant forms of corruption in Ukrainian public universities and proposes ways to combat corruption at the HEI level. For this, we analyse data from national authorities and civil society on corruption in the education sector. A subsequent corruption mapping identifies three of the most common corruption schemes: entrance examinations, grade attainment throughout university education, as well as administrative corruption. The paper closes with a set of policy recommendations to a) collect more data and conduct further research; b) increase transparency in the Ukrainian HEIs; c) conduct information campaigns and encourage participation of the civil society; d) increase oversight of HEIs; e) create a better reward and punishment mechanism system for HEI employees; f) standardise exams in the written form; and g) encourage academic freedom.

Keywords: corruption, higher education, Ukraine, universities

JEL Classification: D73, I23

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