Universities and public goods: In defence of democratic deliberation, compassionate imagining and cosmopolitan justice

Waghid, Yusef (2009)

CITATION: Waghid, Y. 2009. Universities and Public Goods: In Defence of Democratic Deliberation, Compassionate Imagining and Cosmopolitan Justice, in E. Bitzer (ed.). Higher Education in South Africa: A Scholarly Look behind the Scenes. Stellenbosch: SUN MeDIA. 71-83. doi:10.18820/9781920338183/04.

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One of the most significant contributions to the advancement of modern higher education is found in the work of Frank and Meyer (2007:290) who argue that the public mission of the contemporary university is to assist in addressing great social problems such as improving business organisation and capital investment, protecting the natural environment, preserving human rights and cultural diversity, resolving crises of governance and promoting democracy – all aspects that constitute what can be referred to as the public goods of higher education. In order to foreground the public mission of the modern (African) university more clearly, I offer an account of higher education as a public good which ought to build on conceptions of democratic deliberation, compassionate imagining and cosmopolitan justice.

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