• | Margaret Thatcher | MR Online

    Willetts the conqueror (part 1): market populism

    This is Part 1 in a five-part series on Willets: Introduction; part 2; part 3; part 4. In the first installment of this multi-part critical review of David Willetts’ (2017) A University Education, we look at his ‘revisionist’ history of the university as it is modernised through successive historical periods – medieval, modern and neoliberal […]

  • | Teaching by Nick Youngson CC BYSA 30 Alpha Stock Images | MR Online

    Willetts the conqueror (part 3): human capital

    The following post is the third instalment of the multi-part review of David Willetts’ ‘A University Life’, you can find here the Introduction; Part 1 and Part 2. Parts 3 and 4 take a slightly different approach, diving deeper into the fundamental principles of marketisation, which centre on the conversion of qualitative experience and practice into quantitatively measurable outcomes, which can in turn become proxies for higher education’s exchange value.

  • | Eye of the snow storm | MR Online

    Willetts the conqueror (part 2): creative destruction

    Welcome to Pt. 2 of the multi-part critical Review of David Willetts’ ‘A University Education’. This part of the Review focuses on Willetts’ plans for so-called ‘alternative providers’ – a euphemistic term which should be read as synonymous with for-profit colleges and universities – and his reflections on wanting to see a British higher education (HE) monopoly rise up to compete with global HE mega-corporations.

  • | David Willetts | MR Online

    Willetts the conqueror: introduction

    Before Jo Johnson and Sam Gyimah, there was David Willetts. As the Minister of State for Universities and Science from 2010 until 2014, under the Tory-led ‘coalition’ government, Willetts oversaw the introduction of a market into the English higher education system – often referred to as ‘marketisation’.