University challenged

From Planet 235

by Andrew Green

Andrew Green gives his perspective on how neoliberalisation has affected staff, students and local communities; why there have been so many recent Vice-Chancellor scandals; and what the marketisation of higher education means for the ability of universities to respond to the future needs of Welsh society.

Once upon a time there was a University of Wales. It began in 1893, during one of Wales’s few periods of sustained prosperity. It brought together the existing three university colleges, founded through the commitment and generosity of ordinary people. It tried to bring coherence to the makeshift development of higher education. It awarded degrees, recognised around the world. It maintained common services, like the University of Wales Press, Gregynog Hall and the Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies. From time to time it tried to give strategic direction to the pattern of teaching and research in Wales.

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