BY. EMMANUEL ODEH.
The article argues that the challenges facing higher education in the new millennium cannot be understood unless proper account is taken of the phenomenon of globalisation. Two points are emphasised. The first is that globalisation cannot simply be seen as a higher form of internationalisation; it is a much more turbulent phenomenon that not only transcends but ignores national boundaries. The second is that globalisation is one element within a larger shift from modernity to post-modernity, which involves not only the radical reconfiguration of society but also an even more radical reconstitution of the concepts and mentalities of the modern world. The university is caught in the middle - as both an institution that embodies modernity but also one of the instrument that is most actively transcending its limits. The article ends by considering whether the university can survive in this brave new world of globalization and post modernity or whether its place will be taken by new forms of `knowledge' organisation. It concludes that, although the new environment will test the resilience of the university to its limits, it can - and will - survive.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word "globalization" was first employed in a publication entitled Towards New Education in 1950, to denote a holistic view of human experience in education. An early description of globalization was penned by the founder of the Bible Student movement Charles Taze Russell who coined the term 'corporate giants' in 1897, although it was not until the 1960s that the term began to be widely used by economists and other social scientists. The term has since then achieved widespread use in the mainstream press by the later half of the 1980s. Since its inception, the concept of globalization has inspired numerous competing definitions and interpretations, with...