Faculty in the News In the News

February 27, 2019 at 4:50 pm

Vedder in Forbes | Gilded Age, Or Beginning of a Gentle Decline?

Dr. Richard Vedder, portrait

Dr. Richard Vedder

Dr. Richard Vedder, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Economics at Ohio University, authored a column in Forbes headlined “Is This Higher Education’s Golden Age, Gilded Age, Or Beginning Of A Gentle Decline?

…I am worried that higher education today may more closely resemble an aged institution undergoing very slow long-term decline, rather like Rome after 300 A.D., Venice after 1500, or the British Empire in the 20th century. Rome, Venice and Britain survive reasonably well today, but they are not what they used to be: the sayings “all roads lead to Rome” or “the sun never sets on the British Empire” once meant something, but not today.

Book cover for Restoring the Promise: Higher Education in AmericaAll of this has led me to write my own critique of contemporary American higher education, Restoring the Promise: American Higher Education Today, out May 1 from the Independent Institute. Over the next two-three months, I expect to write a series (maybe close to 20) blogs picking up themes in the book, including several possible solutions to some of the current problems besetting the academy. Perhaps like our nation as a whole, higher education has lost some of its planetary edge. It is excessively costly, too little learning is going on, and there is a significant mismatch between student vocational expectations and labor market reality. Add to that other problems: growing administrative bloat, corruption in costly intercollegiate athletic programs, a stifling of free speech, a decline in intellectual diversity, etc. Not a particularly uplifting story, but one needing to be told. Stay tuned.

Read his column at Forbes.

 

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