Greater prosperity requires more jobs, and more jobs require more economic growth. And the best way to do that, this chain of reasoning continues, is to make investments in higher education and high-tech research. How else to cultivate the next generation of highly skilled, motivated workers for today's ever-dynamic information economy?
That view -- promoted by college presidents, governors and experts in the economics of higher education -- is often cited in the quest for more funding for state university systems. But what if it's wrong?