State Policy Leadership for the Future: History of State Coordination and Governance and Alternatives for the Future

In 2005, the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education (The National Center) published "State Capacity for Higher Education Policy," a policy brief that explored challenges with educational equity and degree completion and called upon states to improve their capacity to deal with these issues. Now, a decade after publishing the original brief, the National Center has joined forces with the Education Commission of the States to revisit some of these core challenges. The report compares states to determine governance policies related to six core issues: state-level planning, state finance policy, maintenance of databases, regulation of higher education institutions and programs, administration of state-level services, and governance of higher education systems and institutions. The paper outlines alternative strategies for implementing these core functions in a way that is most conducive to improving the educational attainment of the state's population given changing conditions and expectations. 

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May 2016