Higher education needs €1.1-billion boost to meet Dutch standards
Dutch universities structurally need 800 million euros per year, as well as a once off investment of 300 million euros, to get the level of education and research back to the desired level, according to a study by accountancy firm PwC for departing Education Minister Ingrid van Engelshoven.
In a letter to parliament, Van Engelshoven wrote that PwC found that the current budget for MBO and HBO is sufficient to maintain the current education level. But more investment is needed to bring this education up to the desired level.
When it comes to universities, however, much more investment is needed. According to PwC, 400 million euros per year is needed to keep education at the current level. If you want to bring the quality of education and research at these institutions to the desired level, that will require a further 400 million euros per year, plus a once-off amount of 300 million euros, the accountancy firm concluded.
The Netherlands' academy for arts and sciences KNAW agrees with PwC's conclusions, it said in a response, NU.nl reports. According to KNAW, the Netherlands should spend 3 percent of its budget on research and innovation "in order to keep up in Europe as a competitive knowledge economy".
The association for Dutch universities VSNU said that universities could use the extra money to "organize education on a small scale, reduce the workload and make more room for independent research."