Disconnect between reality and marketing?

Great article in Le Devoir this weekend about the enormous disconnect between how research functions in reality and how universities define and measure success. When universities use rankings to define “success” they misvalue the potential and future impact of the work done. Using business terms and market (and marketing) logic which cannot predict or immediately profit from pace or direction of current research they do everyone a disservice. Maybe they wouldn’t have to do this if governments, citizens and students recognized the true value and real costs of education and research.

« Or le Nobel est accordé en moyenne 25 ans après la découverte qu’il récompense. Il est donc complètement absurde d’utiliser un tel critère pour mesurer la qualité actuelle d’une université », fait remarquer Yves Gingras qui, dans son livre, donne l’exemple d’Albert Einstein, qui était associé à l’Université de Berlin quand il a reçu son prix Nobel en 1922.

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I m a professor in the Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics at McGill University.

1 comment on “Disconnect between reality and marketing?

  1. I couldn’t agree more. The challenge of “measuring” quality plagues teaching as much as research. The indicators commonly used do give us some idea of quality, but we need to build in some kind of perspective and add dimensions to the ratings currently used.

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