Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Innovative University

An interesting book by that title has just been published. The authors are Clayton Christensen of HBS and Henry Eyring, an administrator at BYU-Idaho. The book provides parallel histories of the evolution of these two universities, Harvard and BYU-Idaho. BYU-Idaho is an LDS-church affiliated institution, and I was surprised when I learned that my rendition of Harvard history in Excellence Without a Soul seems to have influenced the authors. It's quite a good account of why change is hard in higher education, giving a case history of one instance in which it has been successfully implemented. I enjoyed reading it, and was interested to learn about what used to be called Ricks College, though I might have learned more if some other examples of higher ed innovation, ones more comparable to places like Harvard, had been presented--though they are not that easy to find!

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