The Policy Structure
An Agenda For The National Center
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Challenges and Opportunities Facing Higher Education
Page 6 of 7


This brief paper has attempted to enumerate the key questions higher education policy faces today, and the way policy might be changed to accommodate the environment in which higher education must function. By its nature, this paper has addressed numerous topics that, while important, could easily be seen as too specific and too mundane. This attention to detail should not be allowed to obscure the broader points in the paper. First, policy for the coming decade cannot be fashioned successfully by fine-tuning policies that are currently in place; policymakers need an entirely new conceptual approach to policy frameworks and subsequently to the individual components of policy. Second, policy--and policy research--must be conceived holistically. Although policy is likely to be implemented piecemeal, it must be designed within the context of a broader perspective. This confluence of critical need and the positioning of the National Center within the ranks of policy researchers creates an opportunity for the National Center to play a unique role in shaping both the way policy is conceived and the way it is applied.


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