Philip G. Altbach

Philip G. Altbach is research professor and the founding director of the Center for International Higher Education. He was the Monan University Professor at Boston College for two decades. He has held appointments at Harvard University, the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and the State University of New York at Buffalo and has been a visiting scholar at Stanford University and the University of California at Berkeley. He was Distinguished Scholar Leader of the Fulbright New Century Scholars Program and was Fulbright Research Professor at the University of Mumbai, India. He is a Fellow of the American Education Research Association and was given the Houlihan Award by NAFSA: Association of International Educators and the Howard Bowen Research Award by the Association for the Study of Higher Education. He has been appointed to honorary professorships by the National Research University–Higher School of Economics in Moscow, Russia, and Peking University and Xiamen Universities in China and has been Onwell Fellow at the University of Hong Kong. Philip Altbach has written or edited more than 50 books. He has served as editor of the Review of Higher Education and the Comparative Education Review.

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Most Recent Articles

February 10, 2013
We are teetering on a very fine line between the right of scholars to express informed opinion and the right of enterprises to be protected from libel. Yet the increasing threats of lawsuits inhibit expression as scholars weigh risks before voicing opinions. There are serious consequences for academic freedom.
December 3, 2012
If one looks around the world, the region perhaps least served by relevant research and analysis of higher education is sub-Saharan Africa.  
July 23, 2012
The OECD reports that four out of ten university graduates in the world will come from China or India by 2020 — and a major part of global enrolment is taking place in these two countries. This trend is an inevitable and entirely natural result of the global expansion of higher education — massification, population trends, and the growth of the economies of both countries.
July 1, 2012
Some observers have argued that distance education and the Internet will fundamentally change the nature of higher education in the coming decades. This is highly debatable for the system as a whole. But for the top tier universities, their traditional missions and the campus-based undergraduate experience is unlikely to change much.
April 5, 2012
The United States is truly moving into the era of the commercialization of international higher education. International students, particularly, are being seen as “cash cows” that can bring in needed revenues at a time of austerity.
March 25, 2012
With persistent pressure for increasing income entrepreneurial universities may pounce on any new market niche if it promises potential students. Domestic branch campuses are yet another element in the increasing commercialization of higher education.   
February 19, 2012
Observers note that there is increased scrutiny of foreign academic initiatives in China. There has been some dissatisfaction with unfulfilled promises and poor quality by some foreign providers. Municipal and provincial authorities, often enthusiastically luring foreign institutions, sometimes turn a blind eye to issues of quality, and it is possible that corrupt practices might be involved. 
January 15, 2012
Established indexed journals have been inundated by submissions and many journals accept as few as 10%. Universities increasingly demand more publications as conditions for promotion, salary increases, or even job security. As a result, the large majority of submissions must seek alternative publication outlets. After all, being published somewhere is better than not be published at all. 
December 25, 2011
Despite a new bill headed for parliament, the regulatory framework for permitting overseas institutions to operate in India seems as murky as ever. Observers, inside and out of India, will watch with interest the next steps of this seemingly unending an confusing saga.
November 9, 2011
Recent research concerning higher education in the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, China, India) reflects as many differences as there are in economic models and cultures But one similarity among these emerging economic powerhouses is the urgent need to improve academic culture. All four countries aspire to being recognized as home to world-class research-focused universities, but this class of institution requires a vibrant, merit-based academic culture.


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