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Thinking About ‘Higher Education’s Road to Relevance’

Higher Education’s Road to Relevance: Navigating Complexity by Susan A. Ambrose and Laura A. Wankel

Published in January 2020

In Higher Education’s Road to Relevance , Susan Ambrose and Laura Wankel set themselves the task of creating a road map to assist colleges and universities in navigating an increasingly complex and challenging postsecondary environment.

Looking back to January 2020, when the book was published, it seemed to all of us in higher education that we had enough on our collective plates.

The realities of demographic change, public disinvestment, rising costs, political polarization, economic inequality, climate change and new competitors seemed like quite enough for those of us in academia to try to manage — thank you very much.

And then the pandemic hit.For the reader of Higher Education’s Road to Relevance , the good news is that none of the structural challenges that Ambrose and Wankel identify have gone away. If anything, the challenges of rising institutional costs and declining revenues have only been heightened by the pandemic.Where this book excels is in situating the roles that colleges and universities play within the context of a rapidly changing economic and social environment. Road to Relevance is strongest in examining the mismatch […]

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