What Leads to High Participation in Tertiary Education?

Friday, July 18, 2014: 3:42 PM
Room: Booth 54
Oral Presentation
Akiyoshi YONEZAWA , Graduate School of International Development, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan
Yoshihiko KADOYA , Graduate School of Econmics, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan
The relationship between demographic change and investment in education is one of the topics that has attracted considerable attention from both policymakers and experts. Extended education increases the social and private costs of raising children, and has been considered a major factor in the decline of birth rates. At the same time, the growing knowledge society requires a high level of participation in higher and post-secondary education. Individuals tend to utilize advanced educational qualifications for migration to world cities and knowledge clusters, but also simply for securing stable jobs in their hometowns. The relationship between the growing patterns of tertiary education enrollment and demographic trends, however, is not that simple. There are varieties of approaches for achieving high levels of participation in tertiary education in different countries and economies; in cost sharing between the public and private sectors, in the distribution of resources within tertiary education systems and institutions, and in regulatory frameworks for sustaining and enhancing academic excellence and a minimum quality of education and training. In this study, the authors examine patterns of achieving high levels of participation in tertiary education, focusing especially on their relationship with demographic changes. Then, the authors identify the characteristics of these patterns in Japan and other East Asian countries where the higher education systems are financially highly privatized, but under the strong guidance of national governments. Lastly, the authors conduct a detailed case study on the reality of the high-participation tertiary education system in Japan as a country facing a very serious aging problem, and outline the implications for international discussion.