One of the knocks against the whole idea of “world-class universities” is that it tends to reinforce institutional privilege; that it’s mostly about big universities with big reputations aiming to expand their financial advantage over everyone else. Without speaking to motive, it is possible to use the financial data I’ve been writing about these last couple of days to examine empirically whether it is true the top dogs are gaining on everyone else or not. And what the data tell us … [ Read More ]
Yesterday we looked at the absolute incomes of world-class universities; that is institutions in the top 200 of the 2017 Shanghai Academic Rankings of World Universities (ARWU). Today, I want to look at the question of whether things are getting better or worse for these institutions.
Of the 174 top-200 ARWU universities for which we have financial data for 2015 or 2016, 155 have data on finances and students going back to 2006. For another 11 institutions, we have data going back … [ Read More ]
Along with my colleague Marcos Ramos, I’ve been working recently on some analysis of “world-class universities” and how they have been getting on in the world. Over the next couple of days I’m going to just lay out some of this research. Buckle in:
We define “world-class universities” as any institution in the top 200 of the 2017 Shanghai Academic Rankings of World Universities (ARWU). Our measure of financial clout is expenditures per student, converted to $US at purchasing-power-parity, using … [ Read More ]
On Saturday, I spent a lovely morning at Mount Allison talking to their Board of Governors. Afterwards, I scooted across the Nova Scotia border to Amherst, which is home to Amy’s, one of Canada’s most remarkable used bookstores. There I found a host of historical higher ed treasures (had to make a quick trip to Giant Tiger to buy a bag to get them all on the plane home), the most amusing of which was Linda Frum’s Guide to Canadian Universities, … [ Read More ]
One of the holy grails in higher education – if you’re on the government or management side of things, anyway – is to find some means of actually measuring institutional effectiveness. It’s all very well to note that alumni at Harvard, Oxford, U of T (pick an elite university, any elite university) tend to go on to great things. But how much of that has to do with them being prestigious and selective enough to only take the cream of … [ Read More ]