Wisdom in the University

Front Cover
Ronald Barnett, Nicholas Maxwell
Routledge, 2008 - Education - 106 pages

This provocative and challenging book questions how people think about what universities should seek to do and how they should respond to the grave problems of our age. It addresses issues such as:

  • What is wisdom?
  • Ought universities to seek, promote and teach wisdom and what would this involve?

  • Does it mean we need a revolution in the aims and methods of academic inquiry?
  • What implications would the pursuit of wisdom have for science, for social inquiry and the humanities, for education?
  • Is it reasonable to ask of universities that they take up the task of helping humanity learn how to create a wiser world?
  • Is there a religious dimension to wisdom?
  • What can non-academics do to encourage universities to take wisdom seriously?
  • Would the pursuit of wisdom be possible given that universities are increasingly subjected to commercial pressures?

With contributions from leading experts in various fields Wisdom in the University is essential reading for all those interested in the future of universities and philosophy of education.

This book was previously published as a special issue of London Review of Education

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.


is the revolution underway?
Commercial influences on the pursuit of wisdom
Wisdom and lifelong learning in the twentyfirst century

2 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2008)

Ronald Barnett is Professor of Higher Education at the Institute of Education, University of London where, from 1994 to 2001, he was also Dean of Professional Development. His books include The Idea of Higher Education, The Limits of Competence, Higher Education: A Critical Business, Realizing the University and Beyond All Reason (all published by Open University Press).

Kelly Coate is Research Officer in the School of Lifelong Education and International Development at the Institute of Education, University of London. Her research interests are in the areas of teaching and learning in higher education, the higher education curriculum, and social justice and equity issues.

Bibliographic information