Corporate Purchase and the Political, Economic, and Ideological Transformations of Higher Education Institutions: The PHINMA Experience

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master in Political Science, Major in Global Politics


Political Science

First Advisor

Carmel V. Abao, PhD


In the Philippines, the government’s inability to satisfy the ever-increasing demand for higher education created an investment opportunity for the private sector which currently accounts for roughly half of the total Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in the country. Large corporations are the dominant players in this market. PHINMA Education has been strategically acquiring HEIs in key growth areas and transforming its academics, operations and student community (PHINMA 2019). The transformation surely extends beyond the creation of new facilities and establishment of new campuses. As institutions, they are shaped and influenced by socioeconomic forces. Schools not only (re)produce the labor power needed for industries, but also the ideas for the submission to the rules of the established political-economic order (Althusser, 1995). This study asked how Private Higher Education Institutions (PHEIs) have been transformed after the purchase of corporations, as well as the implications of said transformations on higher education in the country. Key Informant Interviews (KII) and Archival Research were used for the study. The case of PHINMA Education demonstrates how the corporate purchase of HEIs can lead to drastic changes contingent on the type of market they choose to serve and the circumstances in which survival and profit can be ensured.

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