California Issues

Revisiting California Higher Education Coordination, by David E. Leveille

David E. Leveille

Accountability in postsecondary education across the nation has matured for the most part over the past five years. The same cannot be said for California. In California, the limited attention to accountability is inconsistent to the heightened focus on accountability at the national level.

California's Fiscal Returns on Investments in Higher Education by Jon Stiles, Michael Hout, and Henry Brady

Jon Stiles
Michael Hout
Henry Brady

The ongoing budget crisis in California raises many questions about the most effective ways to allocate resources in ways which sustain future investments. In this paper, we consider two questions: What are the benefits to the state for investing in higher education? And, how do current educational investments create an environment which supports future needs?

Doing Much More with Less: Implementing Operational Excellence at UC Berkeley by Andrew J. Szeri, Richard Lyons, Peggy Huston, and John Wilton

Andrew J. Szeri
Richard Lyons
Peggy Huston
John Wilton

Universities are undergoing historic change, from the sharp downward shift in government funding to widespread demands to document performance. At the University of California Berkeley, this led to an operational change effort unlike any the university had ever attempted, dubbed Operational Excellence. The authors describe their experiences designing and leading this change effort, with emphasis on practical advice for similar efforts at other universities.

The Management of Intercollegiate Athletics at UC Berkeley: Turning Points and Consequences, by John Cummins and Kirsten Hextrum

John Cummins
Kirsten Hextrum

This white paper is based on a larger project being conducted with the Regional Oral History Office at the Bancroft Library.  The purpose of the research is to explore the history of the management of Intercollegiate Athletics at UC Berkeley from the 1960s to the present.  The project began in 2009 and will include, when completed, approximately 70 oral history interviews of individuals who played key roles in the management of intercollegiate athletics over that period of time – Chancellors, Athletic Directors, senior administrators, Faculty Athletic Representatives, other key facult

UC Berkeley's Adaptations to the Crisis of Public Higher Education in the US: Privatization? Commercialization? Or Hybridization? by George W. Breslauer

George W. Breslauer

The University of California at Berkeley now delivers more to the public of California than it ever has, and it does this on the basis of proportionally less funding by the State government than it has ever received.  This claim may come as a surprise, since it is often said that Berkeley is in the process of privatizing, becoming less of a public university and more in the service of private interests.  To the contrary, as the State’s commitment to higher education and social-welfare programs has declined, UC Berkeley has struggled to preserve and even expand its public role, while s

Berkeley's New Approach to Global Engagement: Early and Current Efforts to Become More International, by Nicholas B. Dirks and Nils Gilman

Nicholas B. Dirks
Nils Gilman

This essay discusses past and current thinking about the globalization of higher education (from a U.S. point of view in particular) and a new model we are attempting to develop at the University of California, Berkeley. This essay begins with a brief narrative of the historical evolution of efforts to internationalize education, from the seventeenth century to the present day, before providing a schematic outline of efforts to create new models for the global university. From its earliest beginnings in the U.S. and elsewhere, higher education embodied important global dimensions.

Small Liberal Arts Colleges and Enrollment Capacity at Public Universities: Imagining a Consortium Approach by Carol T. Christ

Carol Christ

Many small private liberal arts colleges struggle to make their enrollment targets, while many public universities cannot meet enrollment demand.  Thinking creatively about collaboration between these kinds of institutions might increase the capacity of our higher education system.  This essay explores models by which we might do so.

A Proposal to Eliminate the SAT in Berkeley Admissions, by Saul Geiser

Saul Geiser

The SAT is used for two purposes at the University of California. First is eligibility: Determining whether applicants meet the minimum requirements for admission to the UC system. Second is admissions selection: At high-demand campuses such as Berkeley, with many more eligible applicants than places available, test scores are used to select from among them.

The One University Idea and its Futures by Patricia A. Pelfrey

Patricia A. Pelfrey

The University of California, the nation’s first multicampus system, is unique in its central organizing principle, known as the one-university idea.  Its premise is simple: that a large and decentralized system of campuses, which share the same mission but differ in size, interests, aspirations, and stage of development, can nevertheless be governed as a single university.  Long regarded as a major structural reason for the UC system’s rise to pre-eminence among public research universities, the one-university model has been a unifying administrative and cultural ethos within UC for

The Effect of Selective Public Research University Enrollment: Evidence from California, by Zachary Bleemer

Zachary Bleemer
What are the benefits and costs of attending a selective public research university instead of a less-selective university or college?
This study examines the 2001-2011 Eligibility in the Local Context (ELC) program, which guaranteed University of California
admission to students in the top four percent of California high school classes. Employing a regression discontinuity design, I
estimate that ELC pulled 8 percent of marginally-admitted students into four "Absorbing'' UC campuses from less-competitive