Center for Spiritual Inquiry and Integral Education

R. Michael Fisher
Future is Coming: Ivory Towers Fall
by R. Michael Fisher - Friday, March 9, 2012, 07:07 AM

I founded CSIIE upon the intuition, and some facts, that the whole of higher education is out-dated for the most part, and will collapse as a hegemonic world of control of post-secondary learning and teaching. The current situation in most of North America, and I suspect in a lot of other countries is that the State is pulling back from funding higher education institutions in the way we are used to seeing it. First, the State is pulling back money rapidly and has been for a decade or more, and second if it is going to give money it is asking for draconian measures of control especially in terms of accountability figures on "success" of such institutions. So, many traditional educational institutions find this situation a crisis. It is, but it is also a direction society is heading in the information age.

The future is one of many entrepreneurial ventures getting involved in the "higher education" industry. This will include non-profit groups and corporations. The field is wide-open for capturing and creating markets for higher learning. Of course, what "higher learning" means to one of these providers may be very different than another. But the competition for capturing this market, and for training the "best and brightest" who can make it in world commerce (i.e., globalization) is a key factor. Corporations, with all their contradictory agendas and values, will not ignore this market of higher education. I haven't specifically studied this phenomenon, but I'll leave it as a point for further research and discussion at CSIIE. What I will leave here is the World's Future Society is bringing in a leading futurist to talk about it in their conference this year. I've extracted some relevant information for you below:

July 27-29, The Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel

WorldFuture 2012, the annual conference of the World Future Society, is your chance to hack the future.

Register before the price goes up, so you don't miss your chance to meet...

Thomas Frey

He’s the “Dean of Futurists,“ according to the Denver Post and the Seattle Post Intelligence, and the “Father of Invention,“ in the words of the Boulder Daily Camera. Whether these newspapers’ reporters are futurists or not, they recognize the special gravitas that Thomas Frey--innovation editor for THE FUTURIST magazine, critically acclaimed blogger, and director of the DaVinci Institute--holds as a foresight expert. Hundreds of startup businesses say that his advice contributed to their success, and established corporations regularly book him to speak at their events. He has delivered keynote addresses for AT&T, IBM, Capital One, Direct TV, and the Times of India, to name a few. He himself started 17 companies, and he worked for 15 years as an engineer for IBM, during which time he won 270 awards—a company record.

Frey will present a session, “When Ivory Towers Fall: The Emerging Education Marketplace,“ on the great shake-ups that lie ahead in higher education. You'll learn about the shifting ground on which higher education stands, the nascent businesses of today that will morph into major “next-ed“ industries in coming years, why many existing colleges and universities will collapse, and what opportunities their demise will create for better systems.