GSE Faculty Research

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Book Chapter

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American Higher Education in the Twenty-First Century, 2nd Edition

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Every decade, about five thousand persons serve as college or university presidents. Over a term of office averaging less than seven years, the president is expected to serve simultaneously as the chief administrator of a large and complex bureaucracy, as the convening colleague of a professional community, as a symbolic elder in a campus culture of shared values and symbols, and (in some institutions) as a public official accountable to a public board and responsive to the demands of other governmental agencies. Balancing the conflicting expectations of these roles has always been difficult; changing demographic trends, fiscal constraints, the complexity and diversity of tasks, university dynamics, and unrealistic public expectations make it virtually impossible for most presidents to provide the leadership that is expected.

Copyright/Permission Statement

Copyright © 2005 Johns Hopkins University Press. This material first appeared in American Higher Education in the Twenty-First Century, 2nd Edition. Altbach, P.G., Berdahl, R.O., & Gumport, P.J. (Eds.). pp. 340-365. Reprinted with permission by Johns Hopkins University Press.



Date Posted: 14 August 2018