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ERIC Number: EJ974878
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1068-1027
What China Inc. Can Learn from American Universities
Fallows, James
Trusteeship, v20 n3 p21-25 May-Jun 2012
From afar, the boom in China's higher education system seems to be one more indication of its ceaseless rise overall. Potentially it is the most significant sign, since a China that could rival the existing American and Western-democratic dominance of the world's research and educational establishment might enjoy many other advantages as well. These could extend from the highly practical, such as the advanced-technology industries that through the past century have been fostered by world-leading research centers, to the "softer" but ultimately more important role of setting intellectual and cultural standards, and training future elites from around the world. America's two truly crucial strategic advantages are the strength of its higher education system and its ability to attract and absorb an outsized share of the world's talent. Clearly these two strengths are related, and if China were able to overtake other countries in this measure, too, it would have important ramifications for the United States. The strengths and limitations of China's higher education drive are of obvious importance to anyone involved in America's university system, and they bear directly on questions of governance as well. The factors that will determine China's evolution as a higher-ed power--intellectual openness and a culture of free inquiry and debate, transparent and trustworthy systems of accountability, stable relations between civil and academic authorities, a balance between independence for faculty members and students and a larger awareness of society's needs--are bellwethers for its development more broadly. China's ability to develop the right kind of university system, with the right governing structures, will tell a lot about the role China will play in the world. For now, these tasks look harder for China than most outsiders assume.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China; United States