That, anyway, is an explanation we sometimes hear from the higher-education establishment. Colleges are helpless victims of rising costs, particularly because rising productivity elsewhere in the economy increases the opportunity costs of faculty members to remain in the education sector.
In today’s Pope Center Clarion Call, economics professor Robert Martin takes a very dim view of a new book that sets forth that exculpatory argument. Martin refutes it, and then gives his own explanation for rising costs, which implicates bloated administrative spending and declining faculty productivity. Martin’s own book on this subject will be published early next year by Edward Elgar.