From the June issue of Choice Review:

“This will be an instant classic. Deploying vast knowledge and lengthy experience as professor of sociology and provost at Columbia University, Cole blends sociological and historical insights to explain the rise and importance of, and threats now facing, top-tier universities in the US. He shows how singular values, freedom of inquiry and from government interference, and a vibrant union of research, teaching, and service to society propelled universities to the apex of higher education in the US. Illustrations of the value of their research and other work follow. The discussion ends with an assessment of dangers to the continued world preeminence of these vital national assets. Ill-informed governing boards; their (and the public’s) failure to understand the focal role of research and its support of teaching; deficient knowledge of the qualities needed for presidents to succeed; budget cuts worsened by the current financial crisis; the politicization of science; creeping political correctness; and potential global rivals all ring a tocsin about dangers to the successes that Cole celebrates. (Is the failure of professors to dress and act as models of professionalism also a problem?) There remains the further challenge of growing disparities of capital to support the best universities. Exhaustive endnotes, illustrations, no bibliography.Summing Up: Highly recommended. All levels/libraries.”

Powerhouses: The real dangers facing America’s most important universities. (2010, January 7) The Economist

University of Chicago, a Bright Spot for the City (2010, January 9) The New York Times.

Review: The Great American University (2010, February 11) Loyd Eskildson, Basil and Spice

Book review: The Great American University (2010, February 14) The Washington Post

Book review: The Great American University (2010, February 14) The Dallas Morning News

Book review: The Great American University (2010, April 8 ) The Times Higher Education

Book review: Protecting and burnishing America’s crown: higher ed (2010, April 16 ) The Boston Globe

© Copyright Jonathan R. Cole