Answer A: What matters is the change in society in general, the change in the center. When "the good ones" have the power, after that immediately, automatically the processes of change will emanate and influence all strata in society.
This is a brief description of what may be labeled consensus omnium. This is maybe the most spread conviction in Bulgaria - not only for politicians, journalists and ordinary people, but -alas! - For the bigger part of the academic world. For some "the good ones" had been the socialist and the left-wing political forces; for others - the right wing ODS (the Union of the Democratic powers); there is a brand new political creed which believes that the "good ones" are the royalists, the new political formation around the ex-monarch. Regardless which one is the political subject imagined as "the good one" or "the salvatory", for the exponents of this view the idea of the university community as an independent and decisive part of society is unconceivable.
Answer B: What matters most of all for the change in the educational sphere is not to suffer from the illusion that the political changes whatsoever automatically lead to changes in the different spheres and communities in society. The academic community is one of them. Moreover it is one of the most important communities in every society. It has to define the essence and the aims of the change in its sphere, it has to discuss and decide what will be the most appropriate means for the achievement of this goal. But if the academic community does not do that, the society regresses, because the school-and university community is one of the most instrumental parts of the social organism.
Unfortunately, a very restricted minority of young academics holds this opinion.
Answer C: We do not need any change whatsoever in our university life. The society has to be changed, but the school and the colleges, the universities and the academies must remain untouched. They ought to preserve their traditions.
The exponents of this claim are usually completely innocent of the fact that 'we', i.e. the Bulgarians do not have only one, but at least two traditions: the pre-socialist one, of the first half of the XX century and the socialist one. What we have now, eleven years after the beginning of the political changes, is the socialist tradition of the governance of the educational policy. And its most stable fundament is the educational legislation, concerning the higher education.
Answer D: Whatever may be the needed changes in the educational sphere, they will be done and properly settled, if they are up to the proper persons. Everything depends on the fact whether or not the Prime Minister, the Minister of education and/or the Rector of our University are a nice guy or not.
This may be called "the bias to personalize" the problems and their solutions. Very wide spread among our university community. It may be subdivided into two ramifications:
Answer E: We need changes in the academic community as well, and it is high time to start them. We must begin by the change of the legislative base and afterwards we have to adhere strictly to the supremacy of the educational laws. But these educational norms have to confirm with the century-long European tradition and the modern legislation of the EC-countries. All remnants from the totalitarian times have to be eradicated from them.
The rarest of all positions.
It is obvious that it will be much easier to gather the necessary material and to make some indisputable statements in respect of the first task. It will be much more difficult to carry one the investigation with regard to the second task, because here one steps on the slippery ground of the so-called 'psychology of the people'. Nevertheless, it is very interesting to examine this typology of the answers to the questions about the necessity of change in the academic sphere and the impact of this to the change of society as a whole.
What was described above in the schematic answers A, B, C, D and E to some degree represents the mentality of the influential academics and politicians in our country. Now I have the presupposition that the situation is similar in some of the other Balkan countries but for the time being, of course it is only a hypothesis.
From the limited impressions I have I dare to state that maybe there are in other Balkan countries similar:
It seems to me that some of these claims may be expressed even with regard to Greece and Slovenia, which means that what we have in Bulgaria is not simply a consequence of the socialist, totalitarian past and the lower economic stage, on which we dwell now. Maybe there are some common Balkan biases that may explain why on the Balkans things do not happen like elsewhere. The universities may play an important role in the modernization of the societies in the countries of our region. The role of the modernization of the educational legislation is instrumental and indisputable. Not only for the educational communities but for the societies as a whole.