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Education, competitiveness and inclusion; responses to the great recession hugh lauder & phillip brown, global hr forum 2010.pdf, seoul, korea

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The global economic downturn has reinforced the idea that future prosperity depends on winning a competitive advantage in the global knowledge-driven economy. This view is reflected in the central ...

The global economic downturn has reinforced the idea that future prosperity depends on winning a competitive advantage in the global knowledge-driven economy. This view is reflected in the central role of education and skills in national economic and social policy. Not only are they seen to hold the key to a competitive economy but to the foundation of social justice and social cohesion. This talk will examine these policy assumptions drawing on key findings from a major funded study of global corporate strategies and the future of work, involving leading transnational companies and policy-makers from seven countries: China, Germany, India, Korea, Singapore, United States and the United Kingdom. It will examine some of the latest trends that are shaping the global supply of university graduates and the demand for ‘knowledge’ workers. It will also examine the rise of a ‘global auction’ for cut-priced brainpower and considers its implications for education, job creation and social justice.

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Education, competitiveness and inclusion; responses to the great recession hugh lauder & phillip brown, global hr forum 2010.pdf, seoul, korea Education, competitiveness and inclusion; responses to the great recession hugh lauder & phillip brown, global hr forum 2010.pdf, seoul, korea Presentation Transcript

  • Education, Competitiveness and Inclusion: Responses to the Great Recession Hugh Lauder - University of Bath & Phillip Brown - Cardiff University Presentation to the Global HR Forum 2010 Seoul 26th -28th, October
  • Education and the Economy at the Crossroads? Two Crises: the Great Recession and The Death of Human Capital in the West? The Policy Levers: Changing Rules, Resources? Three Nations, The UK, the USA and Germany.
  • Education and the Economy Since the advent of discourses about the knowledge economy education has been seen as central to economic development.
  • Education and the Economy There have been three reasons for this: Universities are seen to be central to innovation; It has been assumed that a knowledge economy increases the demands for well paid, creative knowledge workers; That through the expected upward social mobility created by the demand for knowledge workers, social inclusion can also be achieved.
  • Education and the Economy: Two Crises The idea that all nations require a large proportion of creative, well paid knowledge workers is questionable. There may be winners and losers: winners in East Asia, losers in some western countries. [See the presentation by Professor Phillip Brown]. It is for this reason that we can refer to two crises: the great recession and the death of human capital in some western countries. The three countries that are the focus of this presentation have responded differently to the twin challenges they now confront. First some data which raises the problem of human capital in the USA and Britain.
  • Graduate Incomes –A Premium? US male hourly wages by decile within educated groups, 1973- 2005 (2005 dollars) Source: Lawrence Mishel, Jared Bernstein, Sylvia Allegretto , The State of Working America 2006/2007, Economic Policy Institute, Ithica, NY: ILR Press, an imprint of Cornell University Press, 2007 60 50 40 HS low HS median HS high 30 College low College median College high 20 10 0 1973 1977 1981 1985 1989 1993 1997 2001 2005
  • US female hourly wages by decile within educated groups, 1973- 2005 ( 2005 dollars) 40 35 30 25 HS low HS median HS high 20 College low College median 15 College high 10 5 0 1973 1977 1981 1985 1989 1993 1997 2001 2005
  • The Problem with the Concept of a Graduate Premium In order to understand what is happening in the labour market for graduates we need to disaggregate the data. Recent studies by the ‘Centre for Education and the Workforce’ Georgetown University, ‘Valuing Certificates’ (2009) and Eurostat (2009) both show similar trends to those above, but as with our own research there is considerable overlap between graduate and non-graduate incomes.
  • Responding to these Crises in Tertiary Education There are two principle levers that governments have at their disposal: 1/ Changes in the resourcing of tertiary education. 2/ Changes in the rules by which resources are allocated. A potential conflict between innovation and inclusion.
  • Changes in Resourcing and Rules in the USA The problems: Loss of momentum in innovation? Polarisation in credentials between college and high school graduates. ‘No bench’ beneath the top universities in the USA. Variable quality of universities and credentials below these schools. Social class divide with top universities attracting those from professional and middle class families while community colleges largely working class in composition.
  • The Solutions Doubling the basic science spend between 2006 and 2016. Expanding loans for students and making them easier to repay. $2billion for community colleges over the next four years. A retreat from the idea of knowledge economy in which a significant proportion of graduates will have well paying, creative jobs?
  • Changes in Rules and Resourcing in Britain The problems: Massive public and private debt; Fundamentally unbalanced economy; Income for graduates polarising; A highly unequal tertiary education system.
  • The Solutions? A reduction and concentration on research in science; 10,000 additional places for STEM subjects. Increased fees for students; Approximately 170,000 students did not get places at university this year when qualified; Further education colleges and apprenticeships not in place to take additional students – a retreat from the knowledge economy?
  • Changes in Rules and Resourcing in Germany The Problems: Highly innovative but concentrated in dynamic export sectors – engineering; Highly unequal system with those from professional and middle class families more likely to attend research universities and universities of applied sciences, while working class students are more likely to enter the dual system; Germany: an exception? Low proportion of graduates, highly innovative engineering based economy.
  • The Solutions • Creation of the Excellence Initiative in which nine universities receive substantial added funding. • Creation of clusters through a Federal competition in areas where Germany has not necessarily been strong. An attempt to broaden the competitive base of the German economy.
  • Drawing the Threads Together   Innovation Strategies – who captures the benefits?   Universities in a global economy do not always work in the national interest. They will follow the market.   The research capacity in STEM subjects may be being hollowed out. Over 60 per cent of engineering graduate students in the USA and Britain are from overseas. Once they may have stayed in these countries but no more.
  • The Tensions Between Innovation and Inclusion Across the responses in all three countries it will be clear that there is a tension between innovation and inclusion. Research funds for innovation tend to go to the most prestigious universities, now including Germany that has changed both its rules and resources for funding of universities – it remains to be seen whether a tension is created there.
  • Conclusion All the indications are that the positional competition for credentials will intensify in these countries. In the USA and Britain there are signs of a retreat from the promises held out for the knowledge economy. The USA and Britain have a major challenge in rebalancing their economies, without that it is more likely that innovations will be captured overseas. They also need to create the demand for graduate work. Failing to do so may lead to a reluctance to attend universities, since the returns to graduates are now questionable. Germany is in a much stronger position yet there must be concerns over questions of education and equity. But there are good non-economic reasons for a university education.
  • The Global Auction: The Broken Promises of Education, Jobs and Incomes Oxford University Press:New York. November, 2010. P.Brown, H.Lauder and D.Ashton.