Category Archives: economics

How do we think of our present time, looking to the future? The 2022 Polycrisis and what comes next

Today is a Sunday in northeastern Virginia.  It’s a very warm afternoon now, the temperature around 88°F (31°C) and humidity driving the heat index to 100°F (38°C). The cats are resting inside, sensibly basking in air conditioning after lazing on … Continue reading

Posted in climatechange, economics, futures, politics, visualization | 11 Comments

Discussing higher education, jobs, and inequality with Tony Carnevale

This past Thursday the Future Trends Forum hosted professor Anthony Carnevale, director of Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce.  Our discussion explored higher education and its many connections to economics, from how to support first-generation college students to … Continue reading

Posted in economics, Future Trends Forum | 13 Comments

Which university or college will be the first to charge $100,000 per year? Checking in on a 2018 forecast

When will the first American college or university charge $100,000 or more to attend for a year?  What might that mean for higher education? I first posed this question in 2018, during the Before Times. The gist was that a … Continue reading

Posted in economics, future of education | 8 Comments

How not to write about the costs of higher ed: another example

The economics of higher ed are notoriously complicated and even shambolic.  Approaching this Byzantine system requires a good amount of research and care just to get started.  Which means it’s very easy to write badly about the topic. Today’s case … Continue reading

Posted in economics | 8 Comments

Have master’s degrees gone too far? A critique and a discussion

Have master’s degrees become a problem? Last week New America’s education policy leader Kevin Carey gave an interview to Slate.  In it Carey and his interlocutor, Jordan Weissmann, argued that American master’s degree* programs have been corrupt and dangerous in … Continue reading

Posted in economics, enrollment, future of education, higher education | 13 Comments

Three big ed tech projects: cashing out or historic investments?

Over the past few days three big ed tech entities made major financial moves. I was struck by that coincidence and wanted to explore what the combination might means. ITEM: To start with, major online program manager (OPM) 2U purchased much of … Continue reading

Posted in economics, education and technology | 14 Comments

American tuition discounting rose again: what that means and why it matters

Today I’m going to describe a key datapoint in higher education. To do so I need to explain a deep weirdness in how students pay for American college and university classes.  Many people have a hard time grasping this strange … Continue reading

Posted in economics, higher education, trends | 7 Comments

Which colleges and universities are cutting prices or offering other deals for the upcoming academic year?

How will higher education make the upcoming academic year work? One strategy is to offer new financial inducements to attract enrollment.  This is especially important for campuses concerned about losing students. Such inducements can take several forms.  One is as … Continue reading

Posted in economics, higher education | 19 Comments

COVID-19 guts the middle: Matt Reed on higher ed, the economy, and the pandemic

How will the pandemic reshape higher education? Matt “Dean Dad” Reed offers an intriguing model in a new column.  He posits that American colleges and universities are vulnerable to COVID-19 in a way that echoes the shape of the modern … Continue reading

Posted in coronavirus, discussions, economics, higher education | 23 Comments

Decades late, most American states start trying to attempt to start to get around to trying to spend a little more money on higher ed

Some important new data just appeared about higher ed financing. tl;dr version: there’s good news and bad news. The good news is: nearly all American states spent more on public higher ed last year than they did the year before. … Continue reading

Posted in economics, trends | 3 Comments