Higher Education Webinars

Getting to Green

An administrator pushes, on a shoestring budget, to move his university and the world toward a more sustainable equilibrium.

July 2, 2009 - 12:39pm
I woke up this morning to hear the end of a seemingly pleasant tete-a-tete between Mark Zandi (of Moody's Economy) and Robert Reich (currently at Berkeley). The statement that stuck in my mind came from the mouth of Zandi; he said "I don't think there's any other issue that policymakers face that is as difficult as the current housing foreclosure crisis." Ummm ... wrong.
July 1, 2009 - 2:31pm
It's just dawned on me that we shouldn't be talking about "accountability" in the educational system. The current connotation of "accountability" is that somewhere there's a responsibility to identifiable individuals, and that's the wrong way to look at any particular system of delivering education. Educational system quality is certainly a topic for attention, but "accountability" isn't a useful construct.
June 29, 2009 - 3:27pm
"Accountability" is one of those lightning-rod words in the educational community. Far too often, it means teaching only those things (easily memorized) that can readily be tested. After all, if you can't measure educational success, how can you know that you're achieving it?
June 28, 2009 - 3:43pm
The 2008 AASHE Digest came out last week. It's a compendium of short blurbs describing sustainability-related activities and achievements at AASHE members colleges and universities. As I mentioned when the 2007 book came out, it's a yearbook rather than an encyclopedia. As a result, it gives only a snapshot of a process which is constantly changing, but it's a pretty large snapshot. "Panorama" might be a better term.
June 25, 2009 - 8:40pm
OK, I can admit when I'm wrong. I shouldn't have used the term "social class" to refer to various strata of folks on campus. While sociologists may disagree about how many social classes exist or what the criteria for differentiating among them are or how stable a particular class hierarchy might be, they pretty much agree on the definition of class. That definition includes (in the words of William Domhoff), "patterned ways of organizing the lives of its members from infancy to old age that create a relatively unique style of life, and ...
June 24, 2009 - 9:19am
... history. Don't know much biology. Don't know much about science books. Don't know much about the French I took.
June 18, 2009 - 3:54pm
The series title "Town & Country" put me in mind of something I hadn't thought about for years.
June 17, 2009 - 2:09pm
Exceptional, at least, in the sense that it goes against the grain of most of what I've been thinking on the subject.
June 15, 2009 - 8:33pm
  So if cities need to get citier and the country needs to get countrier, what does that mean for campuses? Do we need to get more universal? More collegiate? More collegial?   Looking at campuses as communities, we need to get more communal. Not all of us, but many. That’s the bad news, if you perceive your current campus environment to be absolutely perfect and any change, as a result, to be for the worse. In general, though, the changes campuses need to make should improve life for students, for faculty and (especially) for staff.  
June 11, 2009 - 9:12pm
Since I was raised as a country boy, with an inherited scorn for city-dwellers and "flatlanders", I've never had much of a taste for high population density. But as I get older and wiser (if only by comparison), the potential of cities is starting to look attractive. Not necessarily the current actuality of cities, but what they could be. What they might be starting to be. What we're finally figuring out how to make them.

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