Friday, June 5, 2009

British Government abolishing ministry for universities

So it appears that universities are now subsumed entirely into the business agenda. From being part of the education ministry until quite recently, higher education is now overseen by the “Department for Business, Innovation and Skills”, whose remit is “to build Britain’s capabilities to compete in the global economy” (BBC News)

Surely state support for science should be more than just about business, at a time of threats from climate change, infectious disease and discoveries of earth-like planets.
Surely state support for higher education should be more than just about business, at a time when we are seeing afresh the importance for our society of the development of ethical integrity, personal growth, creativity and critical engagement in democracy.
Surely state support for research in the humanities and social sciences should be more than just about business at a time when work purely dedicated to furthering the knowledge and capacities of humankind is being devalued by a narrow commodity agenda.