ERIC Number: ED317784
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984
The Learning Enterprise. Adult Learning, Human Capital, and Economic Development.
Perelman, Lewis J.
The recent frenzy over education--that is, children and schools--has obscured an adult learning crisis that will really put this nation's economy at risk between now and the beginning of the next century. The postindustrial economy demands a new kind of learning enterprise, focused on adults rather than children, on learning rather than education, on technology rather than institutions, and on private competition rather than public administration. Economic security in the postindustrial economy depends less on expertise and more on "flexpertise"--the ability continually to adapt individual knowledge and skill. Virtually the entire adult population needs retraining and new learning to be economically productive. Reforms of elementary and secondary education, however justified, will have little impact on these urgent adult learning needs before the next century. "More education" will not solve the human capital crisis. The emergence of a knowledge-based economy requires a new synthesis of the functions of training, education, and other forms of communication and learning under the single umbrella of the "learning enterprise." The major barrier to reforming the current policy framework and creating the kind of learning enterprise needed by a new economy is an appalling lack of timely and accurate information about the entire system of adult learning in the United States. This information must be gathered, education must be made learning centered rather than degree centered, and new technology must be used, in order to meet the economy's growing need for flexible human capital. (KC)
Descriptors: Adult Basic Education, Adult Education, Adult Learning, Adult Literacy, Adult Students, Attitude Change, Dislocated Workers, Economic Development, Educational Attitudes, Educational Needs, Futures (of Society), Human Capital, Information Processing, Job Training, Labor Demands, Labor Needs, Postsecondary Education, Public Policy, Retraining, Technological Advancement, Work Attitudes, Work Environment
Council of State Policy and Planning Agencies Publications, 400 North Capitol Street, NW, Suite 285, Washington, DC 20001 ($10.00; 10% discount on bulk orders).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Council of State Policy and Planning Agencies, Washington, DC.