This article is from WeChat official account:Chen Zhiwen Observation (ID:chenzw_edu)< span class = "text-remarks">, author: Zhiwen (China Education online editor, members of the Group Steering Committee of the national Education examination, growth and governance research and education focused on young people, author of “Higher Education reform Chinese people talk about 40”) , The head picture comes from: Visual China
Financial appropriation only accounts for 20% of Tsinghua’s revenue. The difference in funding for well-known universities is not caused by the difference in appropriation by the national authorities or financial departments. To a large extent, it is by universities Gaps in “funding” capabilities.
The Ministry of Education announced the annual budget of directly affiliated colleges and universities. Tsinghua once again ranked first, reaching 31.728 billion yuan. It is also the only university in the country with more than 30 billion yuan. Zhejiang University and Peking University, ranked second and third, also exceeded 20 billion, reaching 22.816 billion and 22.134 billion respectively. Sun Yat-sen University approached the 20 billion club with 19.855 billion. In addition, there are nine universities with more than 10 billion, namely Shanghai Jiaotong University, Fudan University, Shandong University, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Southeast University, Tongji University, Wuhan University and Sichuan University.
Compared with 2020, the total funding of most colleges and universities has increased, and a few have decreased. Tsinghua University increased by 557 million compared to last year, but it was far lower than Peking University’s growth of 3.026 billion and Zhejiang University’s 1.196 billion. Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications increased by 34%. Under the current economic situation, it is not easy for the funding of universities to maintain growth.
Simply looking at the numbers, the gap between income and expenditure is more obvious. The high funding of colleges and universities has attracted the attention of all sectors of society, and the imbalance and disparity have caused doubts and criticism from all sectors of society.Especially this leads to doubts and criticisms of education fairness. However, there are many misunderstandings and misunderstandings in these criticisms and doubts.
In fact, the difference in budgetary funds between universities is not caused by the different appropriations of the competent department or the financial department. If you further analyze the composition of the budgetary funds of colleges and universities, you can see that the budget structure of colleges and universities is still quite different.
Let’s take the first place, Tsinghua University as an example, and make a simple structural analysis of its income structure in 2021.
According to the budget announced by Tsinghua University, its income that year was 22.881 billion, mainly from four sources, plus 8.847 billion carried over from the previous year.(cross-annual budget), totaling 31.728 billion. The carry-over from the previous year is a regular multi-year funding arrangement that is common in colleges and universities. In order to analyze the income composition more clearly, we exclude the carry-over from the previous year and only analyze how the 22.8 billion came from.
The four incomes are general public budget appropriation; government fund budget appropriation; business income; other income. These four income items are consistent with other colleges and universities. For the second item, budget allocations from government funds are relatively small and can be ignored. We mainly analyze the remaining three items.
The first item is the general public budget appropriation income. In 2021, it is 4.36 billion. This money is actually a direct financial appropriation as we understand it. This budget accounted for nearly 20% of Tsinghua’s budget income of 22.8 billion that year.
The third item is the main source of income, which is 12.65 billion, far exceeding the first item. The items written in the budget are business income. This revenue accounted for 55% of Tsinghua’s budget of 22.8 billion this year. So, what kind of income is this item?
Career income is relatively unfamiliar and vague to ordinary people. I try my best to use a discourse system that everyone is familiar with, but may not be completely accurate. The money actually includes two aspects, one is tuition and training income, and the other is scientific research income.
In terms of tuition income, don’t misunderstand. For ordinary full-time undergraduates and graduate students, this tuition is very low, and the proportion is not high. A relatively high proportion is social training for non-academic education. Tsinghua University was the first to cancel academic education in continuing education 20 years ago. Mainly various non-academic trainings for the society. Without the blessing of academic qualifications, the actual level and ability are even more needed. learnThe embodiment of the school’s social service ability. In this regard, it is recognized in the industry that Tsinghua University should be the best university in the country. The money is not detailed, and the estimated income is about 1 billion.
Another important source is scientific research. Research revenues are from relevant national departments, such as the Ministry of Science and Technology, the National Natural Science Foundation of China and other departments, as well as those commissioned by enterprises, such as Huawei, Tencent, Sogou, etc., who have invested in the construction of laboratories or related projects with relevant departments of Tsinghua University.
Career income is the core of Tsinghua’s income, as well as the core of other well-known universities. And this part of the income is all from colleges and universities, which are earned by the colleges themselves, and not paid by anyone. The differences in funding for famous universities are reflected in this aspect.
The fourth and final item of income. Tsinghua’s budget states “other income”, which is 5.78 billion yuan in 2021, which also exceeds the financial allocation. This income generally mainly includes income from alumni and social donations, income from the transformation of scientific research results, income from related affiliated companies, etc.
Compared with other famous universities, Tsinghua’s ability to attract money in this revenue is very strong, far surpassing other universities.
In other words, of all Tsinghua’s funds in 2021, the state finance directly allocates 4.36 billion yuan, accounting for nearly 20%, and the other two main incomes are “earned” by Tsinghua itself, accounting for 80%. In fact, as regards the first direct fiscal appropriation, Tsinghua has also seen a slight decline in recent years, rather than an increase.
Other well-known universities are similar. The proportion of direct funding from the state budget is not high, and it is mainly self-raised funds.
The difference in university funding, and even the disparity, is objective. How exactly is it caused?
The gap between the rich and the poor in colleges and universities is the gap in the ability of schools to raise funds independently, and the gap in the level of local socio-economic development.
Among the well-known universities, except for the “Emperor Food” directly funded by Tsinghua and Peking University, which is at the level of more than 4 billion, other famous universities are basically 2 to 3 billion, which is relatively average, and not as far as we imagined. Big. Take 2019 as an example. Among the top ten colleges and universities in terms of total income, Peking University has the highest allocation of 5.83 billion yuan, and the lowest is Sun Yat-sen University’s 2.77 billion yuan. Even Renmin University of China, which is a purely liberal arts college, had 2.22 billion in that year.
Obviously, the decisive role of the income is the “management” ability of each school, that is, the ability to make money on its own, not the “imperial ration”, that is, the direct financial appropriation.
The “management” ability of a school directly determines and affects the amount of funding for each college. As for how this “management” ability is formed and improved, it is a very complicated issue, and it is not the focus of this article, but it is inseparable. Open up two aspects of objective conditions and subjective ability. Here are a few objective features, or objective advantages and disadvantages.
For example, the influence of disciplines is great. Science and engineering schools are generally better than liberal arts schools, and schools with advantages in engineering are better than science universities. For example, although Renmin University of China is very good, its funding is not comparable to that of first-class universities. It is basically ranked behind 15th. For another example, in the same city, schools at the same level are generally leading schools with strong engineering disciplines. In Beijing, Tsinghua’s income is much higher than that of Peking University. Similarly, Shanghai Jiaotong University is also higher than Fudan, Southeast University is higher than Nanjing University, and Huake is higher than Wuhan University.
Another feature is the influence of the level of local social and economic development. In other words, the local government’s support for colleges and universities is also a big part. The most prominent of these is Sun Yat-sen University. Although the central government’s direct funding is not too much, its overall fiscal revenue is close to 20 billion, ranking fourth, surpassing Shanghai’s Fudan University and Jiaotong University. This is related to the large-scale increase of investment in higher education in Guangdong in accordance with the needs of local social and economic development in recent years. Even the central universities and colleges in Guangdong have given huge financial support. In contrast, universities in the Northeast are ranked relatively low, and local financial resources are limited as a factor.
The “management” ability to raise funds from multiple sources is an important foundation for the development of colleges and universities, and it is also a manifestation of the basic capabilities and levels of first-class universities. It should be praised and should not be demonized or stigmatized.
The development and construction of colleges and universities is inseparable from adequate financial support. No matter which country, under which education system and concept, it is the same. The most famous universities in the world must be supported by strong capital investment. However, the funds of most famous universities do not rely on government funding, but on their ownMy fund-raising ability, therefore, the “fund-raising” ability of a university is very important. This is also a prominent feature of famous universities. We need to have a correct and comprehensive understanding of the ability of universities in this area.
In 1996, Tian Changlin, then president of the University of California, Berkeley, visited the mainland. President Tian was also the first Chinese to be the president of a world-renowned university. When answering the reporter “What has changed in the role transition from professor and scholar to principal”, President Tian thought for a long time and replied: money! Principal Tian said frankly, In the past, he was only in charge of academic and scientific research. Now, as the principal, money is the number one priority. He carefully calculated an account. On average, every day he needs to obtain a donation or grant of $1 million for the school, which has become his first task.
In this regard, Harvard University is a typical master and a model for many schools. In the 2017-2018 fiscal year, Harvard University’s revenue totaled US$5.2 billion, an increase of 4 percentage points year-on-year, with a surplus of US$190 million. The size of the endowment fund was close to US$40 billion, and the return on investment was 10% last year. It is said that Harvard University has a huge operating team of thousands of people, with very complex and mature operations. Unlike us, Social donations and fund management are its core income. It is under the support of its huge fund-raising ability that Harvard’s stable development is ensured.
In the United Kingdom, the nominal principal is often just a pure scholar, and the core is responsible for attending some major ceremonial events. At that time, Fudan University President Yang Fujia served as the president of the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom and played this role. The real person in charge of the school is the CEO, the executive principal, or the general manager. The reason is that it is necessary to be fully responsible for school governance and financing, and a generalist is needed.
With only 4.36 billion yuan allocated by the state, accounting for 20% of the school’s total income, a group of well-known universities represented by Tsinghua University raised development funds through multiple channels. They did not completely rely on government funding to run the school. We should positively affirm the development level and ability of Chinese universities, rather than stigmatizing, demonizing, or even simply hating the rich on the basis of misunderstanding.
The ability that should have been praised, under this misunderstanding, it is easy to create a negative public opinion environment and pressure, to a certain extent, to contain and affect the enthusiasm and initiative of colleges and universities in raising funds.
Of course, the starting point of many of these criticisms is also a spur and expectation. This is what our colleges and universities should understand and respect.
In recent years, a group of China represented by Tsinghua University and Peking UniversityColleges and universities have begun to enter the ranks of the world’s top universities, but compared with the world’s most famous universities, the gap is still relatively large, and this includes the gap in funding. But I believe that with the improvement of China’s social and economic development and the improvement of the quality and governance of universities, this gap will become smaller and smaller, not only in funding, but also in quality.
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