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Model convergence and the global higher education market: the challenge to U.S. exceptionalism


  • Nicolas Gachon



This article deals with the U.S. higher education system from an organizational, political and economic angle. The analysis falls into the policy studies category and uses the framework of model convergence as well as a number of prisms (historical, ideological, and geopolitical) to assess the long-term implications of U.S. higher education’s early adherence to market norms. The argument is that the historical construction of a distinctively U.S. higher education model, one that became the global source of policy transfer after the 1980s, and precisely for that same reason, ultimately led to a relative erosion of U.S. higher education’s competitive edge at the turn of the twentyfirst century. For the United States, one-way external policy transfer conveyed an implicit geostrategic challenge from the outset: in higher education as in other fields, exporting requires sustained renewal capacity to secure the model status of the export source. ****** Este articulo trata acerca del sistema de educación superior en Estados Unidos desde un ángulo organizacional, político y económico. El análisis está enmarcado en la categoría de estudios de política y utiliza la convergencia de modelos así como también una serie de prismas (histórico, ideológico, y geopolítico) para evaluar a largo plazo las consecuencias de la educación superior en Estados Unidos y su temprana adhesión a las normas del mercado. El argumento es que la construcción histórica de un modelo de educación distintiva en Estados Unidos, el cual llegó a convertirse en fuente global de la transferencia de política después del decenio de 1980, y precisamente por esta misma razón, últimamente condujo a una relativa erosión competitiva de la educación superior de Estados Unidos del siglo XXI. En el caso de los Estados Unidos, la transferencia de política externa de sentido único transmitió un implícito desafío desde el principio: tanto en la educación superior, como en otros campos, exportar requiere capacidad de renovación para asegurar el estado de modelo del origen de la exportación.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicolas Gachon, 2013. "Model convergence and the global higher education market: the challenge to U.S. exceptionalism," DIMENSIÓN EMPRESARIAL, UNIVERSIDAD AUTONOMA DEL CARIBE, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:col:000461:011153

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