Thursday, January 17, 2013

China's Surge in College Graduates

A lengthy, important story today by Keith Bradsher, a pillar of the New York Times for decades, shines the light on China's huge investment in the mass production of college graduates. I have yet to read the entire piece, but I think the three graphs included in the story sum it up. One shows China's share of worldwide college enrollment climbing while the United States's drops; another one shows the number of Chinese college graduates rocketing off the charts while far below the U.S. nearly flatlines; and the third and final one is a bar chart that shows the enormous year-after-year increase in Chinese educational spending.

Western global dominance since the nineteenth century, one could argue, has been synonymous with its superior university system -- the highest manifestation of its culture. If China is successful and hits its target of educating 195 million college graduates by 2020 -- almost two-thirds of the entire U.S. population -- then a shift will be underway akin, speaking metaphorically, to a geomagnetic reversal. (And it is not out of bounds to link such reversals to mass extinctions.)

This is the second long, important story Bradsher has written in the last month. At the end of December he chronicled the change occurring in China's world-leading powerhouse electronics factories.

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