For a comprehensive list of CSHE videos and event recordings please visit:

Here is a sample of CSHE videos:

Neo-Nationalism and Universities: Turkey, Hungary and the EU

Based on chapters in the new book Neo-Nationalism and Universities (Johns Hopkins University Press), chapter contributors discuss the findings from their cases studies and provide an update the latest developments in Turkey, Hungary, and more broadly Neo-nationalist movements within the EU and among EU “periphery” nations.

Meet the Author: Neo-Nationalism and Universities

Universities have long been at the forefront of both national development and global integration. But the political and policy world in which they operate is undergoing a transition, one that is reflective of a significant change in domestic politics and international relations: a populist turn inward among a key group of nation-states often led by demagogues that include China and Hong Kong, Turkey, Hungary, Russia, Brazil, the United Kingdom, and the Trump era in the United States. In many parts of the world, the COVID-19 pandemic provided an opportunity for populists and autocrats to further consolidate their power. Within right-wing political ecosystems, universities, in effect, offer the proverbial canary in the coal mine—a window into the extent of civil liberties and the political environment and trajectory of nation-states.

Is there Academic Freedom in an Online World? graphic

Is there Academic Freedom in an Online World?

Principles of academic freedom are central to the ethos of a university. They govern the conduct of the events that make up the life of a university, providing that classes, lectures, symposia, conferences and colloquia are venues of open discussion and free dissent. Over the past year, because of the Covid pandemic, these venues have largely migrated from in-person venues to on-line platforms, and these platforms will continue to play an essential role going forward. With the increasing importance of on-line venues, does academic freedom retain the same meaning and offer the same protections? Is it compromised by the interests of hosting platforms? Is there academic freedom, as it has traditionally governed the dissemination of academic content, in an on-line world? Our symposium will explore these questions, and discuss their academic and legal ramifications and repercussions.

Current Approaches to Improvement of College and University Teaching

What has learning science research discovered over the past decade that can improve teaching substantially? How does great quality teaching vary by discipline? What technological tools and methods have been developed recently that can enhance teaching? How do students from different backgrounds and with different types of preparation benefit from various instructional techniques? To what degree is student learning a result of teachers’ mastery of their discipline and command of pedagogy rather than individual student engagement and preparation? How can assessment data be used to increase student learning? What incentives should be offered for improvements in college and university teaching quality?

Policies Regarding COVID-19 at Universities Throughout the World

How have universities around the world been impacted by COVID-19 ? University leaders from India, South Africa and Germany will outline their university’s policies and practices in continuing support for student access to undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as to the safety of faculty and staff. What has been the financial effect of the virus? What virtual, in-person, and hybrid student instruction and research policies were most and least successful? What actions did each university take to assess student outcomes? When is campus life expected to return to pre-virus status, and what have university leaders learned from this experience?

An Open Systems Approach to the Future of U.S. Universities

In organizational studies, “open systems” approaches emphasize the interaction of environmental forces and internal structures in producing institutional change. A panel of leading higher education scholars will examine the influence of international competition, federal and state patronage, technological innovations, and social movements on the future trajectory of American universities, and how university administrators can be expected to manage these environmental drivers of change. The panelists will describe the new models of universities that are developing as a result of this mix of environmental influences and managerial incentives.

Evolution of University Systems: Goals, Strategies, Obstacles and Achievements

Many states throughout the U.S. are actively merging and consolidating campuses or making plans for this in their future. These changes seek to reshape higher education opportunities in order to address changing demographics, continuing declines in revenue, promote organizational efficiency, expand academic programs and create clearer curricular paths. The three efforts to be discussed were engaged by university systems integrating constituent universities/colleges in Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. What are the alternatives, advantages and risks incurred as consolidations and mergers are designed and implemented? This webinar will feature these three major efforts and their ongoing plans and progress.

Impact of Public Spending on Postsecondary Attainment

Increasing the postsecondary attainment rate of college-age youth is an important economic priority in the U.S. and in other developed countries, but little is known about whether different forms of public subsidy can increase degree completion. In this study, we compare the impacts of public spending on postsecondary attainment when it is spent on lowering tuition prices versus increasing the quality of the college experience. We do so by estimating the causal impact of changes in tuition and spending on enrollment and degree completion in U.S. public postsecondary institutions between 1990 and 2013. We estimate these impacts using a newly assembled data set of legislative tuition caps and freezes, combined with variation in exposure to state budget shocks that is driven by differences in historical reliance on state appropriations. We find large impacts of spending on enrollment and degree completion. In contrast, we find no impact of price changes. Our estimates suggest that spending increases are more effective per-dollar than price cuts as a means of increasing postsecondary attainment.

Rhetoric Vs. Realities: The Student Debt Crisis

What is the logic behind calls to forgive student debt? Can the repayment system be modified to address borrower hardship while protecting taxpayers? This discussion of student debt will question the premise that there is a general crisis, focusing on the students and institutions facing difficulties, the benefits of borrowing for college as well as the sometimes severe problems debt financing creates, and potential policy solutions. Looking at the data on who borrows, how much they borrow, and how successfully they repay can ground the conversation in evidence rather than emotion.


Higher Education in 2021 and Beyond: The National Outlook

Will 2021 witness a new relationship between the federal government and public colleges and universities? State budgets are currently strained by costs of Covid-19 and resulting loss of revenue from unemployment and residents’ decreased earnings. This suggests that higher education budgets could be cut substantially. Enrollment numbers of nonresident students may also continue to be reduced by travel problems. The federal government already works with colleges and universities via student financial aid, scientific research funding and via other programs. But without federal assistance, public higher education budgets could face a crisis. How will federal funding and policy change in the next few years?

Anti-Racism in International Education

How can international educators lead in crafting a vision for a post-racist world? How can they leverage the multiple tools that intercultural learning and cross-cultural communication provides to develop the next generation of anti-racist leaders? How can they work to normalise cross-cultural and intercultural diversity in the communities that they inhabit?

Where theFuture Lies: Budgets and Other Challenges Faced by Higher Education

California has been battered by the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic recession, and the nation’s racial reckoning – and higher education is at the center of it all. College campuses have become sites of super-spreader events. Colleges and universities are spending significant resources because of the pandemic, but the state’s budget is too strained to be of much help. And student groups – long a harbinger of social change – are demanding that colleges and universities confront systemic racism and champion equity. Join George Blumenthal in conversation with Lande Ajose, Higher Education Senior Policy Advisor for Governor Gavin Newsom, as they discuss these issues and what the trio of crises means for the future of California higher education.

Is 'Tuition-Free' a Good Idea?

The cost of higher education and resulting student debt has become a serious national issue. While it certainly is an important issue, proposals for federal investment raise many questions and do not address equally important concerns such as the student drop-out problem or the question of student learning outcomes. Resources lost in public higher education since 2008 have strained higher education finances in numerous ways, requiring strategic investment of new funding. This panel will discuss these questions, drawing upon panelists’ experience and research on the issues of student success among all socioeconomic levels and appropriate types and levels support of universities.

Higher Education Researchers Workgroup: Academic Freedom

George Blumenthal, Director of CSHE and Chancellor of UC Santa Cruz, emeritus and Robert Carlen May, Professor emeritus of philosophy, UC Davis and CSHE affiliate lead a discussion on academic freedom. They are currently writing an article together on this topic, one always of great importance, now much in the news.

The Polarization in Trust for American Institutions since 1970

The well-known polarization of American politics in the past fifty years has led to polarization in evaluations of basic knowledge producing institutions, including higher education, science, and journalism, so that they are now trusted more by Democrats than by Republicans. Similarly there is polarization in evaluations of basic rules and values institutions such as the police, the military, and religion so that they are now trusted more by Republicans than Democrats. Using data from the 1970s onwards from three different polling organizations and a recent survey of their own, Dean Henry Brady and Brad Kent discuss what this means for American politics and for higher education.

Co-sponsored by the Institute of Governmental Studies

Can We Ever Forgive Joseph Le Conte?—The Challenge of Names on UC Berkeley's Buildings

In 2015, the Sierra Club requested that the National Park Service remove the name Joseph Le Conte from the 1903 memorial lodge named in his honor in Yosemite Valley. Recently the UC Berkeley physics faculty has asked campus administration to remove the Le Conte name, which recognizes both Joseph Le Conte and his brother John Le Conte, from the building housing the physics department. Both requests cite Joseph Le Conte’s ownership of enslaved people on a Georgia plantation, an inheritance shared with brother John Le Conte; their active support of the Confederacy during the Civil War; and Joseph’s writings advocating white supremacy. This presentation will consider the background from which the brothers came; the circumstances that brought them to the University of California; the reasons that their contemporaries held them in high regard; and the context for Joseph Le Conte’s writing on white supremacy. Questions at the heart of the naming issue include at the forefront: is there an appropriate balance for weighing the brothers’ considerable achievements against what we now know to be the long-lasting damage to American society arising from institutions that they supported? This presentation proposes a beginning point for the discussion. Karen Merritt is an Associate of the Center for Studies in Higher Education. Before retirement, she served as Director of Academic Planning and Program Review in the UC Office of the President and Director of Academic Planning for UC Merced. She is co-editor of From Rangeland to Research University: the Birth of the University of California, Merced. Her current research is on the role of UC faculty and alumni in the founding of the Sierra Club and National Park Service.

The Impact of COVID 19 on University Research and International Collaborations

International knowledge networks are essential for research and research is a core function of universities. All aspects of university work are currently strained by the Covid-19, but international programs, including research collaboration, are especially pressured. These programs have produced some of the most creative and innovative results in many disciplines. This panel will discuss both the challenges that international research collaboration is facing in the current environment and will describe plans for supporting these efforts and planning for their future post-pandemic.

Challenges and Opportunities for California Community Colleges in Responding to COVID 19

The panel will provide multiple perspectives on the potential financial and operational impact of COVID 19 on California’s community colleges. Panel members will include the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges, the Chancellor of the Foothill-De Anza Community College District, as well as UC Berkeley higher education researcher with experience as a CFO at multiple college campuses. Specific topics addressed by the panelists will include the financial and operational impact of current responses to the COVID 19 crisis including on-line instruction and the curtailment of on campus activities. Panelists will also provide their perspectives on how individual campuses are preparing for future operations including both the challenges and opportunities associated with responding to COVID 19 and the accompanying economic recession. The panel will also review the differences between the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009 with the current and future financial impact of COVID 19. This will include a review of current and future actions by the federal government such as Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act and its impact on California’s Community Colleges.

Being a Student during the Pandemic

The webinar will feature the preliminary results from the SERU Consortium surveys on the impact of COVID-19 on learning, well-being, finances and plans of undergraduate and graduate students at US research-intensive universities. The follow-up discussion will include perspectives from university leadership on institutional responses to the pandemic and plans to improve student experience going forward. PowerPoint Presentation:

Co-sponsored by the University of Minnesota

Covid-19: The end or revival of international higher education?

Recent years have witnessed a rise in the level of nationalism in many countries with tightened immigration policies and stronger governmental oversight of multinational research collaborations. At the same time, competition among countries and universities for international students has increased significantly, while the demographics of young populations in many countries are shifting. Now, the onset of an historic global pandemic, with its serious travel challenges and dramatic economic effects, raises yet another threat to the future of internationalization on U.S. campuses. How can universities develop new policies and practices that respond to both problems and opportunities resulting from this unprecedented crisis? You are invited to hear presentations by three outstandingly expert and highly experienced figures in the field of international higher education and join in a discussion of these important topics.

Financial Impacts of Covid-19 on Higher Education in California

The panel will provide multiple perspectives on the potential financial impact of COVID 19 on California’s public colleges and universities. Panel members will include campus CEOs from the University of California and California State University system as well as from a UC Berkeley higher education researcher with experience as a CFO at multiple UC and CSU campuses. Specific topics addressed by the panelists will include the financial impact of current responses to the COVID 19 crisis including on-line instruction and the curtailment of on campus activities. Panelists will also provide their perspectives on how individual campuses are preparing for future operations. The panel will also review the differences between the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009 with the current and future financial impact of COVID 19. This will include a review of current action by the federal government such as Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act and its impact on UC and CSU campuses.

Divergent Pathways: New Measurements of Undergraduate Success

Utilizing newly designed performance assessments to better identify undergraduate experiences and outcomes, the Next Generation Undergraduate Success Measurement Project improves the understanding of the value of undergraduate educational experiences and promotes evidence-based models of undergraduate student success. UCI School of Education Dean Richard Arum discusses preliminary findings and possibilities to apply this measurement system to improve the value of higher education investments.

Spring Lecture: Devon Graves

To understand the barriers that exist in the financial aid process, Dr. Devon Graves conducted his dissertation research on financial aid verification and disbursement at a California community college. He contends that aid policies and practices carried out on community college campuses are founded in racist ideologies, which overregulate students and delay their receipt of financial aid.

“Foreign influence” rhetoric and internationalization at UC Berkeley

Panelists: Lisa Alvarez-Cohen, Moderator, Vice Provost for Academic Planning & Senior International Officer Randy Howard Katz, Vice Chancellor for Research Patrick Schlesinger, Assistant Vice Chancellor, Research Administration and Compliance Ashley Spinelli, Senior Global Engagement Specialist, Global Engagement Office Gina Banks Daly, Director of Federal Relations in the Government and Community Relations Office

American Higher Education in 2040

Speaker: Arthur Levine

Future Needs for Higher Education

Speaker: UC Santa Cruz Chancellor George R. Blumenthal

New Nationalism and Universities: Global Perspectives on Politics and Policy and the Future of Higher Education

New Nationalism and Universities: Global Perspectives on Politics and Policy and the Future of Higher Education. The Center for Studies in Higher Education (CSHE) commemorated its 60th Anniversary with a two-day international conference on November 16 and 17, 2017 in Berkeley, California. CSHE alumni and affiliated researchers, along with leading scholars and practitioners from throughout the world, explored the influence of nationalism, old and new versions, on major national universities in different regions of the globe.

Technology and Higher Education with Michael McPherson

Technological advances in education.

MOOCs and the Future of Higher Education

Coursera, MOOCs and traditional higher education.

How Will UC Merced Grow? A 21st Century Approach to Campus Expansion

Speaker: Thomas Peterson, Daniel Feitelberg

The College Dropout Scandal

Speaker: David Kirp

Cliometric History of the University of California

Speakers: John Aubrey Douglass & Zach Bleemer