- Research: 7 Rules of Research Data Management
- UK: Humanities Grads Fuelled Growth
- US: Gates Shapes HE Policy
- MBA: Tenure System Stifles B-schools
The availability of research data – the digital data or analogue sources that underpin research findings – is high on the agenda of higher education policy makers, funders and researchers committed to open practice. Sound research rests on the ability to evidence, verify and reproduce results.If this sounds obvious, the practice of making reseach data available is surprisingly limited. Take the recent case of the 2010 Reinhart-Rogoff paper on economic growth that was found to contain errors and the exclusion of some data that significantly undermined the results. The results were published in a prestigious journal, the American Economic Review, that seemingly failed to enforce its own data availability policy, which meant it was only this year that these errors were discovered.
Oxford’s humanities graduates, especially its philosophers, led the way into the new finance jobs that helped to drive economic growth in Britain.A pioneering study of 11,000 graduates of English, history, philosophy, classics and modern languages between 1960 to 1989 shows dramatic movement into new growth sectors including finance, media and legal services.”Humanities graduate employment expanded rapidly into key growing economic sectors in advance of government policy that encouraged these sectors,” says the new report from Oxford.”The responsiveness of humanities graduates to emerging economic trends suggests that the literate, critical and communication skills that have long been the core of humanities-based higher education continue to stand graduates very well.”
Over the past several years, lawmakers in dozens of states have passed laws restricting remedial college courses and tying appropriations to graduation rates.The changes have been advanced by an unusual alliance of private foundations and state policy makers who are shaping higher-education strategies in profound ways.At the center of that effort, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has financed studies that argue for broad-scale changes aimed at pushing more
students, more quickly, toward graduation. Working alongside the Lumina Foundation through intermediaries like Complete College America and another nonprofit, Jobs for the Future, the Gates foundation has helped influence higher-education policy at the state level to a degree that may be unprecedented for a private foundation.
If business schools in western economies were owned by public shareholders, investors would be anxious today to sell their holdings. The outlook for many business schools is as ominous as the financial pages in the last recession: falling enrolments, lay-offs, rocketing prices that are out of reach for many, funding cuts, formidable competition for the lucrative international student market coming from their home countries (China and India) and low-cost competition from online education. But the worst of it is that many business schools in Europe and North America cannot restructure themselves quickly enough. The reason is a stifling obstacle that would drive away even the most daring private equity firms from making a purchase offer: tenured professors. Tenure makes it extraordinarily difficult for administrators to fire non-performers. It limits the flow of research funding from stable and less-critical domains to emerging and crucial areas. And it enables professors to resist more effective but radically different teaching methods – particularly online technologies that should be revolutionising the classroom as much as they’ve already reshaped the office.