Academic inbreeding: local challenge, global problem

Philip G. Altbach, Maria Yudkevich, Laura E. Rumbley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


“Academic inbreeding”—involving the appointment of faculty members who graduated from the institution employing them—is considered a small and peripheral aspect of the academic profession but is quite widespread globally. This paper analyzes the nature of inbreeding and its impact on universities. Data from eight countries where inbreeding is widespread are analyzed in order to examine the perceived impact of the phenomenon on academics and universities. Our analysis reveals that while inbreeding has deleterious effects on universities, it is widely perceived as a “normal” part of academic life—and some positive aspects are evident.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-330
Number of pages14
JournalAsia Pacific Education Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - 13 Sep 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015, Education Research Institute, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea.


  • Academic inbreeding
  • Academic profession
  • Faculty inbreeding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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