Higher education in the mirror of challenges and modern alternatives
Keywords:higher education as an element of society, development controversies, leadership pretensions, mission and operational status of a modern university, university as a model for building human capital
The growing role of education in society has actually begun since the division of labor and continues to this day. The highest GDP growth rates in the second half of the twentieth century were due to the development and impact of higher education. Nevertheless, there are growing concerns in the expert community about the controversial development of education in general and the higher education segment in particular; saying that the modern higher education institution has almost lost its influence on the formation of not only society but itself, and the higher education institution itself is transformed into obedient object of external regulations. This feature contains not so much advantages as disadvantages, as «harmonious interaction» with the megatrends of today is achieved through the loss of precious capital of critical and systematic thinking, as well as intellectual responsibility and civic position. This factor forms a grand conceptual and praxeological problem, the interpretation of which naturally claims the status of scientific novelty. The phenomenon of the university is analyzed through the prism of its historical dynamics and role. Particular attention is paid to the qualitative characteristics and virtues due to which the university has acquired a respectable status, hoping to maintain these positions in the future. The leadership reputation of a modern university is reflected: what is the basis for the leadership of the university, what is necessary and sufficient for the leadership status quo, which features of leadership are meaningful, and which are purely formal, stereotypical and inadequate. The university is understood as a model for building human capital: whether and to what extent modern universities meet these requirements and what stands in the way of optimizing the current status quo.
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