Education and the New Economy: A Policy Planning Exercise

Publication February 1998

This document reports in some detail on a policy exercise on education and the new economy held in Aspen, Colorado, June 23-25, 1997. The exercise was intended to help the National Center for Research in Vocational Education (NCRVE) understand the development of education and training in the near future. The exercise took advantage of expertise in social gaming developed at RAND, one of the Center’s host sites. Participants included about two dozen education researchers and decisionmakers from across the United States. Here, we report on the motivation for the exercise, its structure and outcomes, and potential implications for educational policy and further gaming. An issue paper summarizes the policy implications alone.

These documents differ from most other NCRVE publications in that we do not attempt to convey any new data or analyses. Having convened some knowledgeable people for structured discussions, we simply wish to make available to anyone interested their reactions to challenges requiring the allocation of funds and the design of an education system to meet future needs. We hope the synthesis we have provided of their thoughts and decisions will aid in framing issues and clarifying the debate over educational priorities.

The National Center for Research in Vocational Education was established by Congress in 1978, in accordance with the Carl D. Perkins Vocational Education Act. The Center operates under the authority of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) and currently consists of a consortium of institutions with headquarters at the University of California, Berkeley. In addition to Berkeley, the consortium includes RAND, the University of Minnesota, the University of Illinois, Teachers College at Columbia University, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, the University of Wisconsin, and MPR Associates, Berkeley, California. The Center’s objectives are:

  • to rethink what vocational education should be and how it can best be delivered
  • to integrate theory and practice in vocational education
  • to help vocational programs anticipate and quickly respond to changes in the economy and in educational needs.

The policy planning exercise was conducted by RAND Education.

Stasz, C., Chiesa, J., & Schwabe, W. (1998, February). Education and the new economy: A policy planning exercise. Berkeley, CA: National Center for Research in Vocational Education.

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