Half of Britains 150 universities must close down if the system is to remain viable, according to a senior academic.
Sir Roderick Floud has proposed a plan for mass redundancies and closures to be adopted by the government in which he criticised the messy, muddled non-system of higher education as inefficient and in need of root-and-branch reform. Floud is the former head of Universities UK, an advocate for universities, and has run several universities.
I believe that we have too many universities, that they are trying to do too many different things, and that the way we fund their research is fundamentally flawed, Floud wrote in Times Higher Education. We dont need two or more universities in each of our major cities, glowering at each other and competing to attract the attentions of businesses and local authorities. Why does Leeds or Sheffield or Oxford, for example, need two vice-chancellors, registrars or groups of governors?
In London, the situation is even more bizarre, with some 40 universities within the M25 [the London Orbital Motorway] and more arriving by the day. We have conservatoires and art colleges which could perfectly well be faculties of a larger university, Floud continued. (Read all)
Yeah, well he has a point. How many PPE, Business Management and Psychology Graduates do we need? Apprenticeships in bricklaying, plastering, plumbing, joinery, car mechanics, engineering, electrical installations and so on would give people the prospect of earning a decent living.
And if we converted all the branches of the University of Usedtobeapoly back to local techs, people could do vocational training for proper jobs instead of taking joke degrees in things like janitorial services.