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A Half-Century of Indian Higher Education

A Half-Century of Indian Higher Education
Essays by Philip G Altbach

First Edition
Edited by:
  • Pawan Agarwal - CEO, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India

Other Titles in:
Education | Planning | Urban Planning

October 2012 | 628 pages | SAGE India
A Half-Century of Indian Higher Education features a select collection of writings on Indian higher education by Professor Philip G. Altbach. Professor Altbach's research papers and articles on Indian higher education—published in journals, periodicals, newspapers and books worldwide—not only established him as a noted expert on Indian higher education but also inspired numerous studies in this area.

This volume, edited by Pawan Agarwal, brings together 34 seminal writings of Professor Altbach on universities and colleges, knowledge production and distribution, academic profession, globalization and open-door policies, academic publishing, campus politics and comparative studies on Indian and Chinese systems. The articles provide an invaluable access to the various issues that have profoundly shaped India's higher education system during the last five decades. They give a comprehensive reading of the development of higher education in post-Independence India in a simple yet gripping style and affirm Professor Altbach's enduring commitment to this area.

The book includes in-depth reflective articles for each of its seven sections by well-known experts on higher education. It also features an insightful interview with Professor Altbach that illuminates many vital areas of higher education worldwide.


Narendra Jadhav


Philip G Altbach
Challenges of Modernisation in Higher Education

Fazal Rizvi
The Permanent Crisis of Indian Higher Education

Problems of University Reform

Higher Education and Modernization: The Indian Case

The Dilemma of Change in Indian Higher Education

A World-Class Country without World-Class Higher Education: India's 21st Century Dilemma

Tiny at the Top

Vedanta University: A Flawed Pipe Dream

Can India Garner the Demographic Dividend? (with N Jayaram)

Whither the Academic Profession in India

N Jayaram
In Search of Saraswati: The Ambivalence of the Indian Academic

The Distorted Guru: The College Teacher in Bombay

The State and Higher Education: An Uneasy Relationship

M Anandakrishnan
Bombay Colleges

The University Context

Book Publishing in a Developing Regional Culture: The Case of Maharashtra, India

Progressive State (with Eldho Mathews)

Temples and World-Class Universities

Right Concept, Wrong Place

Altbach on Globalisation and Open-door Policies K B Powar

Beware of the Trojan Horse

Towards Creation of World-Class Universities (with N Jayaram)

Is Open Door in Higher Education Desirable?

The Global Academic Revolution: Implications for India

Deconstructing the Imperium: Publishing, Language Question, and the Future of Indian Higher Eucation

Arvind Radhakrishnan
Book Publishing in a Developing Regional Culture: The Case of Maharashtra, India

Neocolonialism and Indian Publishing

Publishing in Developing Countries: India as a Case Study

Centre and Periphery: The Case of India

The Imperial Tongue: English as the Dominating Academic Language

Student Movement: Now and Then

K N Panikkar
The Transformation of the Indian Student Movement

Anatomy of Indian Student Unrest

Indian Campus Politics

Student Politics and Higher Education in India

The Transition of the Bombay Student Movement

India and the World University Crisis

Student Politics: Historical Perspective and the Changing Scene

Comparing China and India

Rafiq Dossani
Gigantic Peripheries: India and China in World Knowledge System

Confucius and the Guru: The Changing Status of the Academic Profession in China and India (with N Jayaram)

The Giants Awake: Higher Education Systems in China and India

"Massification Has Unanticipated Consequences": Interview with Philip G. Altbach

Eldho Mathew
Afterword: India's Higher Education Challenges Philip G. Altbach

Epilogue: Higher Education in India-The Twelfth Plan and Beyond



[The book] covers a wide range of subjects...Not a single aspect of higher education in India has gone untouched—ranging from student politics to contemporary challenges.... The book should be read by everybody interested in higher education. It provides opportunities not only to reflect on the past and also to think about the future direction of higher education in India.

Book Review, Vol 38, January 2014

The book as a whole makes it clear that the juggernaut of Indian higher education will move on but there are massive challenges at all levels and in all respects…there is a useful detailed index at the end, and the entire volume is well-produced and makes partly intriguing reading.

South Asia Research,
Volume 36 (Issue 1), February 2016

Pawan Agarwal

Pawan Agarwal is serving as Adviser, Higher Education in the Planning Commission, where he has steered the formulation of the country’s Twelfth Plan for Higher Education. He has earlier worked as Director in the Ministry of HRD and Financial Advisor, University Grants Commission.He has been a Fulbright New Century Scholar at Harvard University/Emory University, a visiting scholar and fellow at ICRIER, New Delhi and the Centre for the Study of Higher Education in University of Melbourne. He is the recipient of the Emerging Leaders Fellowship of the Australia India Institute for the year 2011–12 and Bloomberg-UTV Policymaker of the Year,... More About Author

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ISBN: 9788132110484