The environment/space of higher education in the United States today.
Question #1 (20 points) Consider the environment/space of higher education in the United States today. It is dominated by organizations like UC Berkeley which follow a generalist strategy—offering a wide variety of courses of study (majors) for students with widely varying interests. Most students major in a mathematical/physical sciences, social/behavioral sciences, or humanities field. But, a persistent minority of students pursue “niche”, multidisciplinary majors like environmental studies, peace and conflict studies, or media studies. In this current environment, we would be unlikely to see the birth of specialized undergraduate colleges that focus on one of the niche, multidisciplinary fields like those mentioned above—they would be unable to compete with generalist colleges and universities. Explain what the properties of the higher education space in the U.S. would have to be if we were to see the emergence of such specialist organizations, at some point in the future. Note that you are being asked to describe a hypothetical higher education environment/space, so we are not looking for exacting detail in your explanations. However, you should provide enough at least conceptual explanation to convey a convincing understanding of the relevant elements of the population ecology perspective. * * * * * Question #2 (20 points) How do museums choose what to exhibit? For the following question, accept the following: The museum’s senior director of operations is the curator. There are three main types of exhibits museums display: Popular: those that attract broad audiences—schoolchildren, regular patrons, tourists, occasional museum visitors. Accessible: those that are easy to understand without extensive training in art technique or history. Scholarly: those that reflect solid art-historical merit and academic research. Museums receive funding from four principal sources, each of which have different preferences for exhibits: Corporations prefer popular exhibitions, and to a lesser extent accessible exhibitions. They are little interested in scholarly exhibitions. Government (federal, state & local) prefer accessible and scholarly exhibitions. The government is okay with popular exhibitions, but less so than the other two. Wealthy individuals prefer scholarly exhibitions (often with pieces from from the individuals’ own collections). They have little interest in popular or accessible exhibitions. Small donors come from individuals and small businesses. In aggregate, small donations may total to a large sum, but no one donor contributes a significant amount. Their interests as an aggregate are unspecified. The curators themselves are not funders. But, they are strongly oriented toward scholarly exhibitions. Now, consider data we have from one year on three large museums. Each had the same total budget of $100M from its funding sources, and each showed 10 total exhibits during the year.